Wear My Shoes Awards 2022:

Wear My Shoes Award – for outstanding practices or projects at the grassroots level:

The World Day Organizing Committee has established the “Wear My Shoes” Award to recognize outstanding practices during 2021 and 2022 at the grassroots level which focus on protecting the rights and well-being of children who are “on the move” which includes refugees, migrants, and internally displaced children. Five winners were selected for outstanding practices or projects implemented at the grassroots level and each received USD $5,000.

Meet the winners

Wear My Shoes Awards 2021:

Wear My Shoes Awards

At EXPO 2020 Dubai in the United Arab Emirates,
five winners were honored for outstanding practices
carried out during the global pandemic in 2020-21 at
the grassroots level, focusing on the most vulnerable
and excluded children. A prize of US$5,000 was
awarded to each of the five winners to support their
ongoing work. The awards were made possible
thanks to a generous donation by the Interfaith
Alliance for Safer Communities in support of the
annual World Day of Prayer and Action for Children
and the Wear My Shoes Campaign.

The five winners of the Wear My Shoes Award
2021 joined the celebration of the World Day of
Prayer and Action for Children 2021 and offered
acceptance speeches.

“This prize inspires us, makes us enthusiastic as a movement for
children and youth to continue onward because it highlights our
mission of mobilizing Christian churches and other organizations
of faith so that children’s and adolescents’ voices will be heard. In
Latin America at this time, the voices of children and adolescents in
Ecuador are being heard. Thank you for being our strategic partner
in defending and advocating for children’s rights.”

— Lisbeth Souza (Movimiento con la Niñez y la Juventud)

“We are very happy to receive this. The honor of this distinction
of Wear My Shoes by Arigatou International, we dedicate it to the
children and youth of Ecuador in the whole world whose thoughts,
feelings and voices must be heard, not only in this context of the
pandemic, where the right of education has been undermined, but
also at all times. Education has been undermined in our country
and all over the world, so therefore we feel that children’s leading
role must be promoted by adults in public domain, social domains,
educational realm, religious world and in their families.”

— Jose Vinces (Paz y Esperanza)
“On behalf of the children, girls and boys in vulnerable situations,
I’d like to say that we are thankful for generously giving us this
support which we know involves solidarity and vision of helping
children achieve their rights to education. Well-being for children
is a priority for our children, for us as well. May God accompany,
may God also strengthen us so that we can continue making an
impact with the excellent sensitivity considering empathy and love
to the children in communities that we serve who are at risk and
may God also help us replicate.”

— Sandra Cázares
“We would first of all like to thank God for this prize because
this has enabled us to be with God in the commission of
accompanying children, the most vulnerable children affected
by the pandemic. We would also like to give special thanks to
our children, on our project team who were the protagonists of
implementing action and their families and collaborators in the
project. The Center la Bastida and I would also like to share our
special thanks to Arigatou International for their accompaniment
and constant support to grow up. And we would like to ask God
to enable us to continue working for happy children and their
well-being. Thank you very much for this prize.”

— Maite María Alvarez Roca
“Thank you all so much for recognizing our effort for children
in Myanmar. The Learning at Home Program started with a very
simple idea of making education available, bringing learning
opportunities to home using Facebook, which is very accessible
to children across Myanmar. We believe that no one should be left
behind in learning no matter what. Learning must go on, with the
work of love and compassion for children, and this is why the Wear
My Shoes Award means a lot to us and children in Myanmar. We
will keep going to create safe learning opportunities for children.
Once again thank you all and let’s keep working for children.”

—Tin Ma Ma Htet
“I want to say a big thanks to all who recognized our idea
and who supported our idea during all those years in which
we implemented this program, especially in the time when it
was very difficult to provide this kind of help to children from
marginalized groups. We try to adapt this and transfer all those
activities in the online world so once again, big thanks for
recognizing our efforts and also big thanks to all our volunteers
and coordinators, teachers and donors who supported our
program during all those years. This will motivate us to continue
to improve the position of children in our community and to face
all problems regarding this situation.”

— Srdjan Vlaskalic
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Dr. Antonia Carla Testa

Dr.Testa, serves as Associate Professor of the Institute of Obstetric and Gynaecological Clinics at the Catholic University. She is the Scientific Director of the Center for Ultrasound in Gynecological Oncology “Class Ultrasound” of the Agostino Gemelli University Hospital Foundation. This is one of the oldest and most reputed hospitals of Rome.

She also leads as the Director of the Simple Departmental Operational Unit “Ambulatory Gynaecology” within the of the Department of Health Sciences of Women, Children and Public Health, of Policlinico Universitario A. Gemelli IRCCS. She serves as Director of the simple operational unit of Outpatient Gynecology, at A. Gemelli Hospital IRCCS.

And as Director of the School of Ultrasound “Class Ultrasound” at Policlinico A. Gemelli, Catholic University of the Sacred Heart, Rome she serves on the International working group on Gynaecological Cancers.

In addition to her global scientific responsibilities, as a consecrated member on one of the worlds largest Catholic movement, the Focolare movement she has conceptualized and led many service initiatives.

Under the guidance and inspiration of Pope Francis she has been convening the very successful ‘Earth Day’ observance in Rome for the past 5 years.

She also led the International Marathon for Solidarity during the COVID 19 Pandemic convening different sections of society to raise funds for vulnerable women and children during the COVID 19 Pandemic. Pope Francis recognized this effort as a Papal outreach initiative and contributed to the significant COVID 19 relief fund.

Antoniacarla.testa@unicatt.it antoniacarla.testa@policlinicogemelli.it