National / Social Issues

Shigeru Ban, 3/11-born charity to receive Asia Game Changer Awards

Kyodo

Architect Shigeru Ban and a charity created in response to the March 2011 earthquake and tsunami in Japan are among the first to receive a new award for leadership from the Asia Society, the organization announced on Tuesday.

The Game Changer Awards recognize “true leaders making a positive and ‘game changing’ contribution to the future of Asia,” Asia Society President Josette Sheeran said in a statement.

Pritzker prize-winning Japanese architect Ban was recognized for his work designing disaster relief shelters that used recyclable cardboard paper tubes and became “a groundbreaking model of innovation in the world of emergency relief.”

Fashion Girls For Humanity, a charity created by New York fashion designers with Japanese ties, was also named. The group originally came together to support victims of the March 2011 earthquake and tsunami, and continued support for disaster victims around the world.

Other awardees included Chinese Internet tycoon and Alibaba e-commerce group chief Jack Ma, who was named Asia Game Changer of the Year, along with Pakistani activist Malala Yousafzai and Indonesian development minister Kuntoro Mangkusubroto.

The Asia Society is a nonprofit organization that works on promoting cross-cultural understanding between Asia and the United States. The awards will be given out at a dinner in October.