I was present in Zürich last Thursday evening, when one of the 2008 awards recipients Dr. Monika Hauser, the founder of Medica Mondiale made a compelling speech before a large audience at Zürich University.
It is Dr. Hauser’s courage and persistence who changed the global perception of raping women in warfare from „something that happens“ to „war crime“ which is currently prosecuted at DeHague in the Netherlands. Medica Mondiale helps restore raped women and girls’ dignity, social integration and ensure education, networking and their livelhood.
Mr. Jakob von Uexkuell also spoke, he said when he founded the award in 1980, he was wondering why we live with problems we can solve. He cites Albert Einstein who had said that a really good idea can be recognized by the fact that ist realisation seems impossible at first sight.
Over 120 award recipients from more than 50 countries have shown that we can solve problems if there is a vision and the persistence to follow it through. After that, there is no going back, minds are changed, perceptions altered forever.
Changing the perception of ageing and the way we perceive old people is just another problem to be solved in the making, thanks to the vision and persistence of Dr. Bill Thomas.
— Christa Monkhouse