Her work with out of school young people, victims of gender based violence and other charitable work earned her the 2021 EU Delegation’s Human Rights Award.
Nafeeza Rodrigues received the award at a special ceremony in her honour on Wednesday night. The award is given to individuals or organisations that contribute to the fulfilment of human rights in the work they carry out.
Rodrigues who founded the Guyana Pride Foundation in 2006 has been involved in community initiatives for a number of years.
“I worked with many non-governmental organizations to improve the lives of schools drop outs, violence against women and girls, HIV Aids etc, referred many of single parents to get their own homes – via the Ministry of Housing, referred many persons to the various entities in an effort resolve their matters, found jobs for many, encouraged children who would have completed their CXC’s to get jobs.”
In her brief bio, she recalled joining the Demerara Lioness Lions Club in 2007 and became a Lions International member. There she held the president’s position for two consecutive years among other positions.
The mother of two said it was her work in the Lions’ Club that “really sparked” a deeper desire to work for the people.
“I took that fire to the sports fraternity, mainly due to the involvement of my children and my willingness to assist.”
She would serve as Public Relations Officer for The Guyana Badminton Association, Vice President for the Malteenoes Sports Club and an Advisor on the Board of the Guyana Karate College.
Rodrigues would later become a Councillor at the Grove Diamond NDC in 2016. She said this led to more involvement in “working for the people”.
The former teacher said that her life is guided by one of her favorite quotes by Mahatma Gandhi- “The best way to find yourself is to lose yourself in the service of others.”