Former Ateneo Lady Eagle badminton player Shawntel Nicole Martinez Nieto has made history as the first-ever Filipino recipient of the Diana Award, the most prestigious accolade given to young people in honor of the Princess of Wales for outstanding social work and humanitarian efforts.
Nieto was among the winners of The Diana Award announced in a virtual ceremony on June 28, 2021, which honored exceptional individuals aged 9 to 25 from the United Kingdom and around the globe.
The Filipina was recognized for her efforts to promote sustainable development and her charity work in marginalized communities.
“Shawntel seemed destined for a high-flying corporate career but spending time in marginalised communities in 2015 shifted her perspective, and her trajectory, forever,” the official website of the award said.
The Ateneo alumna co-founded the One Cainta Food Program, an initiative that feeds a thousand people each day in Cainta, Rizal during the nationwide community quarantine imposed due to COVID-19, which has left many Filipinos jobless and unable to provide for their families.
“When the pandemic left 50,000 people in her city unemployed, she initiated a programme that has provided food for a thousand people each day,” the Diana Award website adds.
The Diana Award was created in memory of Diana Frances Spencer, Princess of Wales, who believed that young people have the power to change the world for the better. It was established in 1999 by the British Government, before becoming an independent charity in 2006, and honors young people who work to improve the lives of others.
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