The Kenyan Germanist, sociologist, journalist, and author, Dr. Auma Obama, is the winner of this year’s International TÜV Rheinland Global Compact Award. On October 10, 2017, the older sister of former US president Barack Obama will receive the international prize for her dedicated work in favor of sustainable, long-term development cooperation. The award will be presented to Dr. Obama at a ceremony at Cologne’s Historic Town Hall, with guests from the fields of politics, economics, and culture.
Prof. Bruno O. Braun, President of TÜV Rheinland Berlin Brandenburg Pfalz e.V. and Chairman of the TÜV Rheinland Foundation: “In Dr. Auma Obama, we are delighted to welcome to Cologne an international award recipient who also has a strong connection to Germany. We see Dr. Obama’s award in relation to the current refugee problems in Europe. Said problems cannot be solved through isolation, but must be addressed and remedied in the countries of origin with the local population. Only then can their living conditions be improved and sustainable development made possible. Through the work of her Sauti Kuu foundation, Auma Obama is especially relying on helping others to help themselves. She is thus paving the way for a sustainable, long-term, and effective development cooperation.
Dr. Auma Obama is the fourth recipient of the International TÜV Rheinland Global Compact Award. In presenting the award, which comes with 25,000 euros, the TÜV Rheinland Foundation has been paying tribute to people whose work has been deeply committed to sustainability and the goals of the United Nations Global Compact.
Following her childhood and youth in Kenya, Dr. Obama studied at the universities of Heidelberg, Berlin, and Bayreuth, where she obtained her doctorate in 1996. Upon her return to Kenya, she worked for the international aid organization CARE. Auma Obama is a member of the World Future Council, as well as a member of the Governing Council of the Kilimanjaro Initiative. She is also the founder and chairwoman of the Auma Obama Foundation Sauti Kuu (Strong Voices). The foundation helps disadvantaged children and young people in Africa to autonomously shape a worthwhile future through practical training, workshops, and offerings for personality development. As an internationally sought-after author and speaker, Auma Obama also campaigns for sustainability.
The TÜV Rheinland Foundation and the Global Compact
To promote sustainable development in society and business worldwide, TÜV Rheinland has supported the United Nations Global Compact since 2006. The initiative to found the Global Compact goes back to then-General Secretary of the United Nations, Kofi Annan, at the 1999 World Economic Forum in Davos. He called on top representatives of leading commercial enterprises to enter into a Global Compact to establish human rights, labor standards, environmental protection and anti-corruption principles as minimum standards in their companies and to advance them on the international stage.
In addition to its work in the Steering Committee of the German Global Compact Network, a key component of TÜV Rheinland’s commitment is presenting the International TÜV Rheinland Global Compact Award. It has been awarded every three years since 2008 by the TÜV Rheinland Foundation, the benefactor of which is TÜV Rheinland Berlin Brandenburg Pfalz e.V. The prize honors outstanding people whose work supports the goals of the United Nations Global Compact. In 2014, the honoree was Prof. Edda Müller, the Chairwoman of Transparency International Germany. Past honorees include the former Federal Minister Dr. Volker Hauff and the businessman Dr. Michael Otto.