Haroon Yasin, a Telenor Pakistan Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) Partner and Telenor Youth Forum (TYF) 2016 alumnus passionate about transforming the Pakistani educational landscape and making quality learning accessible to the underprivileged youth, has won the prestigious ‘Queen’s Young Leaders’ Award for his digital learning project ‘Orenda’. In June 2018, Haroon will be traveling to the Buckingham Palace along with his team to receive the award from Queen Elizabeth herself.
The Queen’s Young Leaders Award recognizes and celebrates exceptional people aged 18-29 from across the Commonwealth, who are taking the lead in their communities and using their skills to transform lives. Winners of this prestigious Award receive a unique package of training, mentoring and networking, including a one-week residential program in the UK during which they collect their Award from Her Majesty The Queen. With this support, Award winners are expected to continue and develop the amazing work they are already doing in their communities.
“As I visited slums and poor neighborhoods in Pakistan, I noticed that a majority of underprivileged out-of-school youth had access to mobile phones but not education,” shares Haroon Yasin, Founder of Project Orenda. “That was the moment I was convinced that mobile phones could be the answer to an inclusive education as a majority of youth already had them. The very idea morphed into Project Orenda, an organization that designs virtual curricula, including video and game-based translations of government curricula, bringing quality education straight to cell phones among other mediums. I thank Telenor Pakistan for their partnership and providing me with valuable business knowledge and unrelenting support which helped me turn my idea into a successful reality,” he added.
Through Youth Forum, Telenor has been providing a robust platform to the youth of its 12 global markets including Pakistan to come up with innovative solutions to the unique social challenges faced by their communities. Haroon Yasin was one of the Pakistani TYF 2016 delegates who presented their ideas to global leaders and was later teamed up by Telenor Pakistan for the formal development of his innovative project that aimed at transforming the teaching and learning environment while meeting the needs of primary schooling in Pakistan through innovative use of technology.
“Seeing our alumnus winning the prestigious ‘Queen’s Young Leaders’ Award strengthens our resolve to continue to serve Pakistan by empowering its people and reducing inequalities” said Kamal Ahmed, Chief Corporate Affairs Officer, Telenor Pakistan. “We extend our sincere congratulations to Haroon Yasin on receiving the coveted award and are confident that he will continue to strive to transform the Pakistani educational landscape. We, at Telenor Pakistan, have and will continue to encourage the youth of this Nation in finding solutions for everyday challenges through the use of ICT technology and in the process make a positive socioeconomic impact” he added.