Establish a Pakistani-American youth award
in your community
A Pakistani-American youth
award recognizes excellence amongst Pakistani-American youth in a specific field
(i.e. Academic, religious, creative, commitment to Pakistan or the local Pakistani-American
community). It would include not only a public recognition of the winner, but
also a cash prize.
This kind of a prize provides
much needed encouragement, appreciation and self-confidence to Pakistani-American
youth, many of whom, like other ethnic minorities, often suffer from a lack
of self-esteem and self-respect.
It would also be a way for
youth to not only strive towards excellence in their fields of interest, but
also to contribute to their local Pakistani community or even a worthy project
Here's how you can arrange this award in your community:
1.Discuss the idea with
like-minded Pakistanis in your community. Gage what their reaction is to it.
Also, if they agree (most probably will support the idea) find out from them
what subjects awards should be given for (i.e. Academic achievement, commitment
to activism in the Pakistani community, etc.). Also discuss what criteria need
to be met before a youth is awarded the prize, as well as how to get the cash
together for the award.
Get these people to become
your core group to work on this project.
2. Delegate the work between
group members. There is plenty to be done. Businesses need to be contacted to
sponsor the award; a list of qualifications need to be prepared; a panel of
judges needs to be brought together to judge the nominations for the awards,
etc. There should be at least three judges for this award and to select runners
3.Choose businesses to sponsor
the award. These should be honest, fair and have a commitment and track record
of serving the local Pakistani community. Meet with the heads of these businesses.
Explain that in exchange for their monetary contribution to the award, they
will receive their names on the plaque that will be given to the winner and
runners up of the award. They will also develop a good reputation within the
community for supporting local Pakistani-American youth.
4.Advertise the award in
the Pakistani-American community. Get flyers printed with the following information:
a. the name of the award and who it's given to
b. how many runner-up prizes are also available
c. who can be nominated for the award (i.e. Up to what age, school level, grade
point average, level of participation in the Pakistani-American community)
d. who the sponsoring organizations are
e. what entrants in the contest have to do (i.e. Does the person nominating
somebody for the award have to write a letter explaining why they chose this
individual? Does the person seeking the award have to write a letter of intent,
e. the deadline to submit nominations and entries
f. the date the winners will be announced
This should also be published
in local newspapers, announced on radio shows and the flyers should be distributed
among family, friends, acquaintances and Pakistani businesses in the city.
5.Gather a panel of judges
to make the decision of who is most deserving of the award, as well as who the
top five runners up are. Judges should be people known in the local Pakistani
community for their activism and dedication, who are educated, well read, committed
to Pakistan and fair. None of them should be related to any of the nominees
for the prize to ensure that there is no bias in the process of selecting a
winner. Make sure that the judges stick to the deadline that has been agreed
to to decide the winner and runners up.
6.When the judges have made
the decision, get plaques made with the names of the winner and runners up,
along with the names of the sponsoring organizations, the date the awards will
be presented on and the title of the award (i.e. "outstanding Pakistani-American
youth of 2001 in the Greater Chicago area: winner (or runner up)").
7.Organize a dinner and
invite all of those who were nominated for the award, their families, and everyone
from the local Pakistani-American community. This will keep the suspense of
who won until the last moment and become a happy community affair. The winner
should present a short speech and one person from the community should discuss
the need for encouraging and recognizing the talents of Pakistani-American youth.
8.Thank the businesses who
sponsored the award, the judges, and all who submitted nominations with a verbal
thanks at the ceremony and a written thank you note afterwards. Encourage those
who didn't win to try for next year's award.
9.Alert your local media
about the award and its winner and runners up. This is a great story that newspapers
in your community are likely to be interested in, especially if they try to
cover ethnic communities. In addition, if these Pakistani-American youth get
press attention, they are likely to get another confidence and self-esteem boost.
10. Encourage Pakistani-American
friends in other parts of the US to establish a similar award in their city
to benefit the young people there.
Date/Time Last Modified: 6/17/2002 3:49:15 PM
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