Sheikh Nahyan bin Mubarak Al Nahyan congratulates awardee Nicole Oliveira de Lima, a nine-year-old aspiring astronomer from Brazil, during the ceremony in Dubai Image Credit: Angel Tesorero/Gulf News

Dubai: Young geniuses from around the world gathered in Dubai on Saturday for the Global Child Prodigy (GCP) Awards, a platform recognising top 100 young talents for their achievements in science, arts, music, dance, writing, acting, entertainment, sports and other fields.

The awarding ceremony was held under the patronage of Sheikh Nahyan bin Mubarak Al Nahyan, Minister of Tolerance and Coexistence, who called the young awardees “the next generation of geniuses and a global force for positive change”.

Sheikh Nahyan said: “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. 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.

‘Universal quest’

“These young people will certainly be making a positive difference in the world. In the UAE, we believe firmly that to embrace excellence and achievement for our youth is to embrace life itself.”

Addressing the young geniuses and their parents, Sheikh Al Nahyan, continued: “You demonstrate that nurturing talent and promoting excellence is a universal quest worthy of pursuit. You help us focus on the important ideals of individual striving, excellence, peaceful competition, discipline, daring, mutual respect, and understanding.”

Prashant Pandey, founder and CEO of GCP Awards, said: “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.”

‘Youngest astronomer’

One of the awardees is Nicole Oliveira de Lima, 9, an aspiring astronomer from Brazil. Accompanied by her parents Zilma Janaca and Jean Carlo, and mentor Rodrigo Carvalho Santiago, de Lima told Gulf News she is set to be recognised as the world’s youngest astronomer, pending review from NASA (National Aeronautics and Space Administration).

“I have discovered around 35 asteroids,” said Nicole, adding: “My fascination in studying planets, stars and other celestial bodies started when I was six years old. I’m really inclined in space science and I want to become an aerospace engineer someday and build a spacecraft for my mentor who is a Brazilian astronaut.”

Antoher awardee is Adihithi KP, 12, from Chennai, India, who was recognised for her talent in Indian classical dance. Trained in Bharatanatyam at the age of five, she secured scholarship under Cultural Talent Search Scholarship Scheme from the Indian Ministry of Culture. She was empanelled as a child artist by the All India Dancers Association.

Sheikh Nahyan with Adihithi KP Image Credit: Angel Tesorero/Gulf News

‘Right guidance and right path’

The GCP Awards 2022 was presented by UAE-based Aster DM Healthcare as the title sponsor. Dr Azad Moopen, founder, chairman and managing director of Aster DM Healthcare, said: “Every child on this planet is special in their own way. The right guidance, the right path and the right environment helps them recognize their inner abilities and manoeuvre them in the right direction.”

He added: “Constant support and encouragement enable them to reach milestones in their life and boost their confidence. I am extremely happy to be a part of this noble initiative this year and I express my gratitude to the organisers for creating this incredible global platform for recognising young and budding talent from a diverse set of categories.”

(from right) Dr Moopen, Sheikh Nahyan, Nobel Laureate Sir Richard J. Roberts, and environmentalist Dr K. Abdul Ghani Image Credit: Supplied

Nobel laureate and environmentalist

Sir Richard J. Roberts, a Nobel Laureate, was also present as guest of honour. Sir Richard was awarded the Nobel Prize in Physiology/Medicine with Dr Phillip Allen Sharp for the discovery of introns in eukaryotic DNA and the mechanism of gene-splicing in the year 1993.

Dr K. Abdul Ghani, a renowned environmentalist who is recognised as the ‘Green Man of India’, likewise graced the occasion. He said about the GCP Awards: “This is a unique initiative to honour children who have great talents and are extraordinary in their own way. This is a great step to support them and give them a global exposure to shine in their respective domains.”

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100 awardees

Awardees hail from USA, France, Russia, United Kingdom, Spain, India, Georgia, Kenya, Brazil, Greece, Belgium, Romania, the Philippines, and other countries. They include:

Aarav Hariharan, Aaron Jeffrey Antonio, Abhijita Gupta, Abhinav Bhanupratap Singh, Adhithi K P, Adrika Goyal, Aelita Andre, Bella Devyatkina, Alena Analeigh, Amith Mazin Shabeel, Amoghavarsha Bhat, Anaisha Lakhani, Aneeshwar Kunchala, Angelos Kandilas, Anna Hursey, Anushka Dixit, Anvesh Subham Pradhan, Ariyike Moyinoluwa Oluwaseun, Arnay Agarwal, Avani Prashanth

Bahar Panjehpour, Caden West, Cairo Zion Rosa, Coco, Darius Brown, Darsh Malani, David Alexandru, Devaagyh Dixit, Dominic Mcnabb, Dymytrii Korzun, Egypt Coleman, Elias Muthomi Gitonga, Elif Eroglu, Francisco Javier, Gaea Mischa Salipot, Guillaume Bénoliel, Gukesh Dommaraju, Gustavo Saldanha, Harpith Pandian and Harpita Pandian, Hasvika Sridharan, Isidora Carvajal, Jack Bonneau, Jack Rico, Jaisal Shah, Jazz Vidamo, Jinwani Jain, John Oseni, John Philip Bughaw, Juju Noda

Ka Ing Yeo, Ishwar Sharma, Kolla Kamalvijay Yuktha, Kumar Aryash, Kunwar Pratap, Libby Magnone, Maksim Mukhin, Nael Umali De Lara, Namya Joshi, Nicole Oliveira De Lima, Noko Nishigaki, Olivia Van Ledtje, Onkar Singh, Pranav Karthik, Prasiddhi Singh, Prensa Regmi, Prisha Karthik, Raina Donatella Tumminello, Rithvik Jandhyala, River Mason, Rodrigo Landa-Romero, Romal Mitr, Romeo Poniat-Guimaraes, Ryan Hickman, Rushank Goyal

Sahand Pourjavad, Sainath Manikandan, Samanyu Pothuraju, Sandra Gadelia, Shanah Manjeru, Shanariha Evans, Sharanya Mudundi, Sharvesh V, Soorya Gayathri, Sophia Katerina Nyberg, Sri Nihal Tammana, Stelios Kerasidis, Stycie Waweru, Suhan Mallick, Taj Farrant, Tanishqa Bhupathiraju, Tara Ghahremani, Tracy Rabi, Vicky Ngo, Vidith S Shankar, Vinayak Bahadur, Vinisha Umashankar, Vladimir Yaganov, Elisabeth Anisimow, Zelda Manteaw, Zita Chizitere Ejike