Last Thursday, Global Shaper Carrie van der Kroon was member of the jury at the Cordaid thesis award at the Royal Tropical Institute in Amsterdam.
This prize recognizes the best thesis of a graduating secondary school student in the Netherlands in the field of societal impact and development. This year, the award was granted to Avigal Wildschut (17 years old, from Huizermaat) with the subject “Vluchten naar de wereld der klanken” (seeking refuge in the world of sounds, using music to bridge divides, connect communities and heal the wounds of war)
Avigal researched whether it was possible and how to positively influence the state of mind of refugee children in the Netherlands by making music together in a music event. The jury commended her thorough methodology and sound research combined with the practical impact of her project in a refugee reception center in Utrecht.
Carrie about the winner: "Avigal put the state of mind and wellbeing of the refugee children at the center of her work. That sounds naturally, but it is not. Very little research has been done internationally into the experiences of children themselves and even less of refugee children. Being a child rights and development professional myself, I can truly commend the exceptional work Avigal has done. She is a real, authentic change maker and hopefully we may welcome her as a Global Shaper in a couple of years!".
Avigal was of course very pleased and also surprised, as the competition was tough. She said: "I am very concerned about the wellbeing of refugee children in the Netherlands and have been looking for a way to be of service. I have found a way, in combining my passion for music and willingness to have an impact on my surroundings and refugee children in particular."