First Lady Mama Rachel Ruto has been conferred with the prestigious KISS Humanitarian Award at the Kalinga Institute of Social Sciences (KISS) in Bhubaneswar, India.
The KISS Humanitarian Award is presented annually by KISS to recognise and celebrate individuals for their exemplary and outstanding service to humanity worldwide.
“I am incredibly grateful and humbled to receive this prestigious humanitarian award today. I extend my heartfelt gratitude to KISS and the distinguished members of the selection committee for this incredible recognition,” said Mama Rachel Ruto.
The award is a symbol of hope, compassion and altruism, and its recognition of acts of kindness is a mechanism that inspires others to follow the same path.
Mama Rachel Ruto was selected for the award in recognition of her humanitarian work through MaMa Doing Good, which has made a significant impact on the lives of women and children in Kenya.
In her acceptance speech, Mama Ruto highlighted the urgent need for unity in addressing global challenges such as climate change and poverty. She stressed the importance of financial inclusion, climate action and promoting youth empowerment, especially for women and vulnerable communities.
“The world is facing unprecedented challenges, from the urgent crises of climate change to poverty and inequitable distribution of resources,” said Mama Ruto. “Now, more than ever, we must unite, share our resources and stand together in our commitment to build a better future for all.”
Mama Rachel Ruto’s commitment to women’s empowerment is evident in her work with the Joyful Women Organisation, which is part of MaMa Doing Good. The organisation empowers women through financial inclusion through table banking. She pledged to continue her work to empower women and vulnerable groups.
“I pledge to continue advocating for the well-being of women, children and vulnerable communities. I will continue to work tirelessly to promote financial inclusion and financial health, access to information and knowledge, credit and livelihood initiatives through our Women Economic Empowerment programmes and address issues that affect women and their families at all levels,” said Mama Rachel Ruto.
The KISS Humanitarian Award is a fitting recognition of Mama Rachel Ruto’s outstanding contribution to women in Kenya.
The past recipients of the KISS Humanitarian Award are drawn from five continents and include two Nobel Laureates.
Other dignitaries present include Prof. Geneshi Lal, Governor of Odisha State, Prof. Achyuta Samanta, Member of Parliament and Founder of Kalinga Institute of Social Sciences (KISS), Kalinga Institute of Industrial Technology (KIIT) and Kalinga Institute of Medical Sciences, Mrs. Saswati Bal, President, Kalinga Institute of Social Sciences and Kalinga Institute of Industrial Technology, Dr. Satya Tripathi, Chancellor, Kalinga Institute of Social Sciences (KISS), and Ambassador Willy Bett, Kenya High Commissioner to India.