Social impact superheroes are all around us.
SreyRam Kuy was 2 years old when the refugee camp where her family had been staying was bombed.
They had been fleeing the “Killing Fields” of the Cambodian genocide, only to be attacked again.
During the bombing, both she and her mother were hit by shrapnel. She lost her ear in the explosion, and her mother’s wounds would’ve likely been fatal without proper medical attention, but thankfully, Red Cross doctors came to their aid, saving both SreyRam’s ear and her mom’s life.
Even though she doesn’t remember much of the experience, the story’s become an integral part of her family’s history. It’s also why SreyRam chose to dedicate her life to helping others as a doctor.
Dr. SreyRam Kuy. Photo via L’Oréal Paris’ Women of Worth.
Not only did she become the first female Cambodian refugee to work as a surgeon in the United States, but she regularly performs free and low-cost surgeries for people in need. She also partners with Dog Tag Bakery — an organization that gives jobs and necessary work experience to disabled veterans.
What’s more, as chief medical officer for the state of Louisiana, she oversaw the first state-led Zika prevention program for pregnant women in the United States.
SreyRam is just one of 10 extraordinary women who were chosen as L’Oréal Paris’ 2017 Women of Worth Honorees.
Since 2005, the brand has selected women who are making a major impact in their communities through their passion for volunteerism and philanthropy. Each Honoree receives a $10,000 grant for their charitable cause, as well as recognition of their work through L’Oréal Paris’ Women of Worth.
Other 2017 Women of Worth honorees. Photo via L’Oréal Paris’ Women of Worth.
Past Honorees have been everything from anti-bullying advocates to supporters of victims of human trafficking to self-defense trainers. It really doesn’t matter what kind of charitable work you do, just as long as it’s making a positive impact on your community.
There are so many women out there who’re making a huge difference but aren’t getting any recognition for it. This program is trying to change that.
Want to nominate someone to be a Woman of Worth? Here’s what you need to know:
Candidates must be women who are legal residents of the 50 United States and 16 years or older at the time of nomination. Their philanthropic work must also have occurred within the United States, and their involvement needs to have been ongoing for at least six months. If it’s filling a previously unmet need in an innovative way and making a significant difference in their community, it’s worthy.
It’s fine if the woman you have in mind gets paid for her work as long as she’s working for a nonprofit or a national service program like AmeriCorps. However, she should have a noticeable passion for what she does that’s inspiring others to follow suit.
Photo via iStock.
If you think you know someone who fits the bill, click here to sign up and submit an application form. You can also submit the form by sending it in the mail to:
"Women of Worth Award" c/o The Points of Light Institute
600 Means Street, Suite 210
Atlanta, GA 30318
If you think you’d make a great honoree yourself, you can absolutely throw your name into the ring!
Whoever you decide to nominate, you better do it soon, because the submission period ends May 31, 2018.
Once all the nominees are submitted, the judges will narrow it down to a group of finalists.
That’s where the final 10 nominees are selected — and where you come back in.
In November, you can see the list of 2018 Honorees online and vote on one to be named the Woman of Worth National Honoree. This woman will receive an additional $25,000 for her charity of choice, along with national recognition for her cause. But every honoree will get an all-expense paid trip to New York City for the awards ceremony, where they’ll meet many notable women who are also working towards social good.
Sounds pretty awesome, huh?
It’s time the world recognizes these unsung philanthropy superheroes, but it’s on you to make that happen.
So what are you waiting for? Get nominating!