The prime minister's wife, Rosmah Mansor, has been selected to be the recipient of Unesco's 'Lead by Example' award in conjunction with the 71st United Nations General Assembly.
Education Ministry secretary-general Alias Ahmad, who is also Malaysian National Commission for Unesco vice-president, said the award was being conferred in recognition of Rosmah's efforts in developing the potential of children, especially through the Permata programme.
The Permata programme for early childood education in Malaysia is a brainchild of Rosmah, who is also its patron.
"This recognition is also an honour for Malaysia for providing quality education for the holistic development of children," Alias said in a statement in Kuala Lumpur today.
He said the prestigious award was an initiative by Unesco and six outstanding women in the world who are involved in education, human rights, empowerment of women and advocates of global citizenship.
The six are Sara Bloomfield, the director of the United States Holocaust Memorial Museum; Unesco Goodwill Ambassador Esther Coopersmith, Meera Gandhi, (founder and CEO of The Giving Back Foundation); Francine Lefrak (Harvard Women's Leadership Board); Deborah Lehr (Antiquities Coalition chairperson) and Catherine Reynolds (founder and CEO of Catherine Reynolds Foundation).
The award presentation ceremony will be held at the 'A Tribute to Heroes in the Global Campaign Against Violent Extremism' event on Sept 22 at the Metropolitan Museum of Arts, New York.
Alias said 13 other awards in various categories would also be presented at the inaugural event.
Other recipients of the awards include Senegal President Macky Sall and several individuals and activists renowned the world over for championing universal peace, like Ayub Mohamud from Kenya, Nicholas Kristof (New York Times) and Nadia Murad (Iraq).
The 71st UN General Assembly opened on Sept 13 and is scheduled to end on Sept 26.