Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon will donate $100,000 he was awarded today by the Pony Chung Scholarship Foundation to help a UN-HABITAT project targeting the poor at Nairobi’s Kibera slums, a spokesperson for the world body announced.
Mr. Ban was recognized by the Foundation, which was established by the Hyundai Corporation, with the Pony Chung Innovation Award given to individuals who bring about innovative and effective changes in the realm of politics, economics, society and culture.
"The award includes a monetary prize of $100,000, all of which the Secretary-General has had transferred to UN-HABITAT," the UN Human Settlements Programme, spokesperson Michele Montas told a press briefing.
"The money will be used for skills training for poor youth in Nairobi's Kibera slum, which the Secretary-General visited on his first trip after taking office," she noted.
During the January visit to that slum - one of the largest on the African continent - Mr. Ban urged residents not to lose hope and pledged to work harder than ever to eradicate global poverty and other social ills.
"I feel very much humbled by what I am seeing now. That makes me resolve again my firm commitment to work for the improvement of the living conditions, education, water, sanitation, housing - all these are the challenges which we must overcome," Mr. Ban said.
The Secretary-General was selected for the award in December 2006 for his accomplishments while he served in the Government of the Republic of Korea.