HIRDA Achievement Award
HIRDA recently introduced an award aimed to celebrate exceptional individual performances of Somali Diaspora in the Netherlands and in other EU countries. This award has a purpose of both celebrating the success of these individuals as well as encouraging them in pursuit of more accomplishments. There were five categories chosen to award the recipients which were; creative business, art, media, writing and one category was reserved for the Somali activists whose impact is tangible. As a migrant organization HIRDA believes the contribution of migrants in their country of origin as well as in their host country. Therefore, HIRDA wants to acknowledge the success of Somalia Diaspora.
The recipients of HIRDA Achievement Awards this year were;
Yasmin Alas, Dutch-Somali writer and actress, She came to the Netherlands at a young age. She attended a drama school and acted in different screen plays. In 1998 she wrote a successful novel, ‘Idil eenmeisje. After that she wrote a number of novels that were well-received. Ms. Allah is also author of several essays that are published in national newspapers such as; Volkskrant. Her most recent novel was published in 2010 and was well received by book critics. The story was about a young women who, at the invitation of a documentary, for the first time goes back to her homeland. It becomes an emotional reunion, when the country of her childhood is completely destroyed and her past wiped with it. Besides her novels Ms. Allas has presented programs on national television.
Axmed Warsame is a civil servant who worked for Somali Democratic republic consulate in Belgium. After the civil war broke in Somalia the embassy was closed, the ambassador and civil servants became unemployed. However, Mr. Warsame remained in the embassy to maintain the embassy building. To many Somalis he is a hero , a selfless citizen who safeguarded the embassy and because of that he was awarded with HIRDA Achievement Award.
Abdulkadir Wardhere, is a Somali artist and painter and works as art teacher at Liberal Academy in the Hague. Mr. Wardhere is one of the Somali artists who are working towards preserving the Somali art and culture in Europe. His art collection are displayed in Somali events as well as online.
Omar Munye is a successful handbag designer with a private atelier. He come as refugee 20 years ago from Somalia and he went to a fashion school. In very young age he started designing bags and sold it to other shops. He started his company in his teen years, which become a very successful company and recognized as training company for fashion students. His bags are wore by women like Hilary Clinton and Queen Maxima.
For the category media Abdisalam Hereri was awarded. He is a veteran journalist who started his journalistic career early on as BBC anchor for the Somali division. He also worked for the popular private television Universal TV. Besides this he worked for various radio’s and TV. He is very popular and well-liked by many Somalis for his style and unique voice.
Awards were presented by among others, former prime minister of Somali Federal Government Abdiwali Sheikh Ahmed, former Mayor of Mogadishu; Mohamed Tarzan, Community activist Sadiq Warfa. The idea of award giving was well-received by youngsters who came for football. They were inspired by the achievements of the awardees.