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Historical Archives host the European Parliament's 'Citizen Prize' ceremony

Posted on 01 September 2017

European Citizen’s Prizes will be awarded at the Historical Archives of the European Union in Florence on 22 September to four Italian honourees: the Opera Immacolata Concezione Onlus; Don Virginio Rigoldi; the Sicilian Fisherman of Mazara del Vallo; and #vorreiprendereiltreno Onlus.

The national ceremony, which honours Italian recipients of the European Parliament’s annual award, is organised by the Information Office of the European Parliament in Italy and the HAEU. 

The European Citizen's Prize was launched by the European Parliament in 2008 to recognise exceptional achievements by European citizens:  the prize is awarded to individuals or groups for their outstanding contributions to either facilitating cross-border cooperation within the EU or promoting better mutual understanding and closer integration between citizens and member states. The Prize is also awarded for day-to-day activities reflecting the values enshrined in the Charter of Fundamental Rights of the European Union. 

This year the European Parliament has honoured 50 people and organisations from 26 EU countries for their contribution to European cooperation and the promotion of shared European values. The national ceremonies take place in the countries of origin of the winners; a subsequent ceremony for all prize recipients will take place in Brussels in October. 

The Opera Immacolata Concezione Onlus Foundation has been providing accommodation for frail people for over 60 years.  Around 2300 guests live in its 13 residences, where they are placed at the heart of a system of inter-generational, inter-cultural networks. Don Virginio Rigoldi  is being recognized for his life’s work dedicated to young people in difficulty.  As chaplain of the ‘Cesare Beccaria’ penal institution for juvenile offenders in Milan since 1972, his Foundation and organisations support training, social reintegration and housing for youth at risk for marginalisation. The Pescatori Siciliani di Mazara Del Vallo are fishermen being recognisedfor their life-saving efforts on behalf of thousands of migrants found drifting at sea in the waters around Sicily over the last several years. The Onlus #Vorreiprendereiltreno was launched by Iacopo Melio to uphold the rights of disabled persons.  It raises disability awareness by taking a light-hearted look at important issues related to disability, promotes a culture of inclusion and accessibility, and carries out projects to dismantle architectural barriers which hinder the free movement of disabled people.

If you wish to attend or see the programme, please consult the event page.