April 8 2016

Croatian woman and Brazilian man win 2016 Hermann Gmeiner Award

Nearly 13,000 online voters chose the winners of the 2016 award, which honours people making a positive impact in their communities.

Innsbruck, Austria – The winners of the Hermann Gmeiner Award for 2016 were announced today: Daliborka Matanovic from Croatia and William Silva dos Santos from Brazil.

Daliborka-web.jpg William-web.jpg

In a statement, Mr Siddhartha Kaul, President of SOS Children’s Villages International, and Mr Helmut Kutin, Chairman of the Hermann Gmeiner Academy, expressed admiration for the winners and all the nominees:

“Our congratulations go to Daliborka Matanovic from Croatia and William Silva dos Santos from Brazil. We also extend our warm congratulations to the other 107 nominees. For the SOS family, you are all winners and we are proud of you and your achievements. All of you represent young men and women who strive to achieve the best possible results in your chosen field. Your work is inspiring to us all.”

The bi-annual Hermann Gmeiner Award celebrates the positive impact that alumni of SOS Children’s Villages programmes make in their communities. Ms Matanovic’s hard work and dedication have led her down an inspiring path of personal and professional achievement. Mr Silva dos Santos has dedicated his time and talent to helping others as an intensive care unit nurse and community volunteer leader.

This year's winners were chosen from eight finalists (selected from 109 nominees from 45 countries) through an online vote that was open to the public. More than 12,800 votes were received during the month-long voting period.
More than 12,800 online votes were cast to determine the two winners of the 2016 Hermann Gmeiner Award.

Ms Matanovic and Mr Silva dos Santos will be honoured at an awards ceremony during the General Assembly of SOS Children’s Villages in Innsbruck, Austria, in June.

“We are greatly looking forward to meeting Daliborka and William since it is young people like them who make us feel that our daily work is the most rewarding cause of all,” stated Mr Kaul and Mr Kutin.