Sir Richard Stagg, the British High Commissioner in India, hosted a small dinner on Monday 12 October2009, for HRH the Earl of Wessex (Prince Edward) KG KCVO in his capacity as Chairman of the International Council and Trustee of the Duke of Edinburgh’s Award International Association. The purpose of the dinner was to allow him to talk about the awards and in particular their future in India. The dinner was a small one for very few select guests.
HRH set the tone by introducing the Award to the captains of the Indian industry, and explained how the business can benefit by partnering with the Award Programme. HRH thanked JCB India for their support to the Award in India and Mrs. Naina Lal Kidwai (Chair, Board Of Trustees, Award Programme Foundation, India & GGM & Country Head, India, HSBC Ltd.) explained how HSBC has now made the Award an integral part of for their young BPO and general staff, the Award will be offered to near 4000 individuals in the HSBC corporate set up.
Vice Admiral Suren Govil, National Chairman, International Award for Young People; has been the key driver of the Award Programme in India for near a decade and a half and emphasised the need for the Special Projects, and how the Award works for social inclusion in India. Jyotsna Govil (senior member of the Governing Council of IAYP, India), who has successfully produced the Award India newsletter for near 13 years, emphasised on the human face of the programme.
Sandeep Dutt, was introduced as the National Director to the august gathering that included Mr Chandrakant K Birla (Chairman Hindustan Motors Ltd, Mr Rajiv Kapoor (Executive Vice President - JCB), Dr Peter Mclaughlin (Headmaster The Doon School), Mr Sunil Kant Munjal (Managing Director/Chairman Hero Corporate Services Ltd), Mr Atul Punj (Ex-Chairman Punj Lloyd Ltd), Mr Ashok J Rabheru (Chairman Genysis Group & Trustee of the Duke of Edinburgh’s Award), Dr Analjit Singh (Chairman Max Healthcare India Ltd.) and Mr K P Singh (Chairman DLF).
Utkarsh Ahuja one young Gold Award holder was invited to cover the event as the official photographer and did the Award family proud. The four Zonal Chairpersons of in India; Mrs Lata Vaidyanathan, Mr. Carl Laurie, Mr. Sourajit Palchoudhuri and Mrs. Margarette Davidraj were also present. The honoured guests appreciated the spirit of the programme and how it equips the young for life. A very warm evening, which ended with the keen commitment to build the Award Programme and reach out to near half a million young people in the near future.