Bihar-born activist to get award in Oxford
PATNA: Bihar-born development activist Arbind Singh will be conferred with Skoll Foundation social entrepreneurship award at Oxford on Thursday. Nearly 1,000 social entrepreneurs, academics and key government officials, including Bihar’s principal secretary, education, Anjani Kumar Singh, have been invited by the Foundation to attend the award ceremony.
Singh is the national coordinator of National Association of Street Vendors of India (NASVI), an all-India platform of more than 615 street vendor organizations and communitybased groups across 23 states in the country.A portion of his fellowship grant would be utilized in the state for the empowerment of underprivileged This year, the Skoll Foundation is awarding four leading development activists.
Besides Singh, who is the only Indian, the other three are Tony Meloto (Philippines), Debbie Aung Din (Myanmar) and Tim Hanstad (Seattle, USA). Singh, an executive director of Nidan, an organization facilitating empowerment of the poor and marginalized sections through appropriate community-based and pro-poor participative interventions in Bihar, Jharkhand, Delhi, Rajasthan and Haryana.
Singh, also an Ashoka Fellow (2007) and Schwab Social Entrepreneur (2008), is also the recipient of first Bihar Innovation Forum Award. Born in Muzaffarpur in 1966, Singh spent his early years in Katihar. He studied at BN College in Patna University before moving to Hindu College, Delhi University. Armed with degrees in sociology and law from DU, he returned to Bihar and worked with various organizations. The Skoll award provides a three-year core operating support grant for recipients to extend their already impressive reach.
When asked about the award and how the organization would use the support grant, Singh told TOI over phone from Delhi, “It’s just a timely recognition of the efforts that we are putting in. Reaching the unreached in Bihar and other new states, galvanizing the disadvantaged and vulnerable communities and facilitating their empowerment through proper organizing and appropriate social business models would be our priorities.”
The Skoll World Forum on Social Entrepreneurship is a premier international platform for advancing entrepreneurial approaches to solve the most pressing problems faced by disadvantaged and marginalized sections in different countries. Its main focus is on accelerating the impact of the world’s leading social entrepreneurs by uniting them with essential partners in a collaborative pursuit of learning, leverage and large-scale social change.