ByÂ Princewill Ekwujuru & Daniel Ailemen
In encouraging acts of heroism in children,Â Dufil Prima Foods Limited, producers of Indomie noodles has began the search for the next set of heroes for the Indomie Independence Day Award for Heroes of Nigeria.
The noodles manufacturer said it is calling for nominations from the public for the 2009 edition of the award, which is children between 5 to 15years, who have shown exemplary courage in a difficult situation to save life or property of someone else or have risen against challenges and limitations of the society, are eligible for nomination.
The company said also thatÂ the award is in line with the brandâ€™s values and itsÂ Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) initiatives.
Mr. Pawan Sharma, Head of Marketing of the company at the press conference in Lagos saidÂ the award is a response to the call by many, to recognize and celebrate the acts of bravery and heroism exhibited by Nigerian children.
His words,â€œwe believe that in every child lies what it takes to become great, however, many brave children today live an extraordinary life without ever being recognized or celebrated. We have responded to the call by many, to recognize and celebrate the acts of bravery and heroism exhibited by Nigerian children. Not only the cosmopolitan and sophisticated, but also those who live in obscurity, lack and insecurity.â€
Sharma explained that several millions of naira was spent in this direction last year, to eulogize the exemplary accomplishments of three children. Giving due recognition to the sacrifices these children have made within the context and limitations of their social_economic status and educational backgrounds.
According to Sharma, â€œthere is no doubt that Nigeria is fortunate and blessed with several young people with similar or even superior nature of service and milk of human kindness flowing in them. It is therefore our main aim to commence the process once again to collect, seeks out and check for true stories, sited events, persons and places from the field pan Nigeria about kids who at one time or the other have done similar act of bravery and made notable sacrifices without any recognition.â€
He stressed that the award scheme is national and will be a yearly event but the criteria is made such that, the act does not necessarily have to be done in the year of the award.
He added that all entries will be scrutinized by a screening committee who later provides a shortlist for consideration by a panel of judges. In order to get deserving individuals for the award, an independent research organisation has been commissioned to further screen and confirm the authenticity of the shortlisted entries. He said.
He went on to list the panel of judges to include Prof. Kayode Oguntuase, HOD, Psychology, University of Lagos, Ruth Osime, Editor, Thisday Fashion & Style, Aisha Oyebode, Founder/CEO, Murtala Mohammed Foundation, Myla Osifo, CEO, Freedom Foundation, Shola Momoh, Wife of the Chairman of Channels TV, Steve Ayorinde, Editor, Punch Newspapers, Detoun Ogwo, CEO Aftergrad National Career Centre.
He concluded that apart from the formal profiling and recognition at the awardÂ ceremony, each recipientÂ (First, Second and Third) will get a crystal plaque of honor, a certificate of appreciation signed by the CEO of DUFIL in gold pen and a Scholarship award valued at N1,000,000.00, N750,000.00 and N500,000.00 respectively.