UNDP beneficiary receives prestigious ‘Business for Peace Award’

Apr 11, 2014

Kesha Pariyar, Chairperson of National Micro Entrepreneurs Federation, was selected as one of the 2014 Business for Peace Honourees by the committee of Nobel Laureates. Photo: UNDP/Nepal

Kesha Pariyar from Nepal awarded the highest form of recognition given to individual business leaders for promoting social responsibility

Kathmandu, Nepal — Kesha Pariyar, a beneficiary of the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) in Nepal, won the Business for Peace Award 2014, a prestigious global prize presented by the Business for Peace Foundation, based in Oslo, Norway.

Ms. Pariyar was selected by the Committee of Nobel Laureates after being named as a candidate by UNDP Nepal. The award recognizes her role in promoting peace and stability using the company she created while taking part in UNDP’s Micro Enterprise Development Programme (MEDEP).

"This is indeed a moment of pride for the country. With MEDEP support, Kesha has tremendously contributed for the livelihoods improvement and empowerment of marginalized  groups and hence very much deserved this award," said Karna Bahadur Thapa, the Minister for Industry.

"Her leadership and success has inspired many others to become entrepreneurs, explore self-employment opportunities and overcome discrimination."

Ms. Pariyar is one of 70,000 beneficiaries of MEDEP, a joint initiative of the Government of Nepal’s Ministry of Industry (GoN-MoI) and UNDP. She will be given the award during a special function on May 15th in Oslo’s City Hall, the same venue where the Nobel Peace Prize is presented.

"I congratulate Kesha Pariyar. This is a shared success with the government of Nepal, colleagues at UNDP and MEDEP, its current major partner the Australian Government and other previous partners who have contributed to MEDEP," said Jamie McGoldrick, United Nations Resident Representative in Nepal.

Ms.Pariyar comes from a poor Dalit family of Binamare. Struggling to provide for her six children and overcoming social discrimination for being a low caste  woman, she became a beneficiary of MEDEP in 1999.

After receiving entrepreneurship development training and access to credit, she established the Manisha Tailoring and Training Centre in 2003. Today, her business provides full-time employment to six people, including her husband and a daughter.

"Business for Peace Honourees are businesspersons who through their own actions and commitments promote socially responsible and ethical business practices in an outstanding way, and stand out as examples to the World," the Selection Committee noted in the award citation.

Ms. Pariyar is also actively involved in organizing Micro Entrepreneurs into groups and associations, encouraging them to advocate for their causes. She was elected as Chairperson of District Micro Entrepreneurs' Groups Association, Parbat in 2005. A year later, Kesha was unanimously elected to lead National Micro Entrepreneurs Federation Nepal (NMEFEN). Today she provides leadership to over 70,000 micro entrepreneurs in Nepal.

Contact information

John Narayan Parajuli: email: narayan.parajuli@undp.org; tel: +977 98511 22684

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