13-year-old Kenyan singer Shanah Manjeru's star continues to shine, putting Kenya's name on the global map.
The gospel artiste was among the 100 youth feted in Dubai on Saturday, at the Global Child Prodigy (GCP) Awards 2022. The GCP is a platform that recognises the top 100 young talents aged up to 15 for their achievements in music, science, arts, dance, entertainment, writing, acting, sports, and other fields.
Manjeru left the country on Friday and joined the other awardees in Dubai who hailed from the USA, France, Russia, United Kingdom, Spain, India, Georgia, Kenya, Brazil, Greece, Belgium, Romania, the Philippines, and other countries.
The elated singer, who hosts 'Big Minds' on KBC, shared the news on her social media platforms, displaying her award and certificate of achievement in music captioned "The Global Child Prodigy Award 2022 is coming home!"
In 2021, Manjeru broke a record in the music industry after becoming the youngest nominee for the All Africa Music Awards (AFRIMA) and winning the Best African Female Artiste in Inspirational Music for her song, 'God Will Make a Way'. Manjeru took over the spot previously held by another Kenyan songstress, Nikita Kering, at 17 in 2019.
Elias Muthomi Gitonga, a five-year-old Kenyan boy passionate about helicopters and planes, was also among the awardees. Muthomi's story was first highlighted in March 2021, where at only four years, he could tell apart 16 types of helicopters and differentiate the parts of a chopper and their uses. In 2019, Muthomi's desire for aviation caught the attention of the military, scoring him an invite to the Eastleigh military airstrip to learn more about helicopters.
The GCP Awards is the world's first and only child prodigy initiative that recognises the top 100 international child prodigies from various facets each year, who also get featured in the Global Child Prodigy Annual Book every year.
Prashant Pandey, the founder & CEO of Global Child Prodigy Awards, said, "This is a unique initiative encouraging child prodigies from around the globe and will serve as a platform to keep recognising talented prodigies in the coming years. We are happy to bring 100 Child Prodigies from all over the world to the beautiful city of Dubai. We will continue to serve as a platform to keep recognising child prodigies in the coming years."
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The grand awarding ceremony was held at the Marriot Hotel in Jaddaf and attended by Nobel Laureate Sir Richard J Roberts as the guest of honour and Sheikh Nahyan bin Mubarak Al Nahyan, Cabinet Member and Minister of Tolerance and Coexistence.
Sheikh Nahyan described the young awardees as the "next generation of geniuses and a global force for a positive difference in the world."
"The Global Child Prodigy Awards call upon us to appreciate human achievement in a way that crosses boundaries of nationality, ethnicity, religion, culture, physical characteristics, and gender. I am delighted to have the opportunity to meet and greet such an inspiring group of young prodigies who come from all parts of the world," said Sheikh Nahyan.
The awardees will be featured in the 'Top 100 Child Prodigies 2022-2023' book, officially launched by Sheikh Nahyan, during the ceremony, which will be distributed to top libraries worldwide.