Smile Foundation, a national level development organization, has been bestowed with the prestigious Lifelong Health Award by Merck Consumer Health. The award recognizes initiatives for children in health and education convergence. Smile Foundation’s programme dedicated to education of underprivileged children – Mission Education, and intervention for value education among privileged children – Child for Child, have been selected as the winner for their integrated approach towards further strengthening of learning outcomes as well as adopting healthy and positive habits early on.
As a part of the project and being the winner of the award, Mr Santanu Mishra, Co-Founder & Executive Trustee, and Mr Sanjeev Dham, COO, Smile Foundation, have participated at the World Health Summit in Berlin held on October 16th-18th 2018 and as part of the award are jury members to further discuss and strengthen the cause of promoting a positive health seeking behavior among children from an early age, to ensure a healthy life along with a longer life expectancy.
The Award is part of Merck’s Health Business’ continued commitment to prepare society for a new era of humans living 100 healthy years. As a precursor to this, Merck had launched a whitepaper entitled “WE100 Healthy Years – Are Kids prepared?” in 2017 with a focus on showcasing the organizations already making inroads into children’s education around health. To ensure a holistic approach, the Lifelong Health blueprint has been developed and outlines a four-step strategy to guide stakeholders as they invest in initiatives addressing aspects of healthy life expectancy for children: a holistic perspective, personal empowerment, a cross-sector approach and making a tangible impact. These same criteria were used by the award jury to assess all applications.
Speaking on the occasion, Mr. Santanu Mishra, Co-Founder & Executive Trustee, Smile Foundation said, “For over a decade now, Smile Foundation has been working with children and their families in remote villages and unreached slums of the country to improve access to education, nutrition and inculcate a positive health seeking behavior at the grassroots level. At the same time, we have also been working towards building empathy and compassion in privileged children towards their less privileged counterparts. The idea is to bridge the gap between the privileged and underprivileged children and lay down the foundation of an equitable society where every child has equal access to education, healthcare and nutrition. We are extremely humbled and honoured to receive this award and the global recognition from Merck Consumer Health.”