The Karic Brothers 2017 Award Winners

The Karic Brothers Award Ceremony honoured winners from Serbia and abroad for outstanding achievements in the 20th gala event at the crowded National Theater in Belgrade.

Karic Foundation that has been involved in humanitarian work for 40 years established the Karic Brothers Award 20 years ago out of desire to further evaluate and highlight the greatest achievements in culture and art, economics and entrepreneurship, journalism, publication and publishing, science and research, humanitarian activities, sport, strengthening democracy, peace, cooperation and friendship among nations.

The guests at the Award Ceremony were representatives of the diplomatic corps, members of the Karic family, important public figures and celebrities from Serbia like Radmila Bakochevic, Milutin Popovic Zahar, Snezhana Dakic, Radmila Karaklayic, Zhivorad Aydachic, prof. Nikola Rackov, Nada Momirovic, Boris Malagurski, legendary soccer player Dushan Savic with his wife Marin Rayevic Savic, Mirka Vasilyevic and her husband Vuyadin Savic, many previous prize winners, Serbian Parliament Speaker Maya Goykovic, Russian Ambassador to Serbia Alexander Chepurin and many others.

Awards were presented by Olivera Karic Nedelykovic, Gorica Nedelykovic Bogdanovic and Milanka Karic.

This year’s ceremony started with the short film about the founders of the Karic Foundation, the Karic family and with a minute of silence to pay the tribute to the recently deceased Sreten Karic, followed with an emotional short video that presented him the kind and gentle man he was for generations to remember.

The host of the Jubilee Ceremony Mrs Milanka Karic, the president of the Honorary Council and one of the founders, pointed out in her opening speech that she is extremely proud and happy that the prestigious prize goes to five ladies, five extraordinary magnificent women.

“My dear ladies, you are the brightest example for all of us, successful, brave, determined and comitted, in a word – unique. Each one of you individually changes our world into better tomorrow for the good of our children. Either by artistic perfomanses, your meaningful words, champion titles, human actions, or by your struggle for your homeland and your people … for better and more just mankind ” said Milanka Karic.

She also reminded us of the words said by the famous Yugoslav actor Velimir Bata Zhivojinovic, who called the Karic Brothers Award an “Serbian Oscar”.

“I sincerely thank all of you who have been with us all these years and you, my dear ladies welcome to the impressive laureate family of the” Karic Brothers Award“, said Milanka Karic.

The first prize winner was Jasna Shekaric, a Serbian Olympic athlete, a sport shooter, awarded for the best achievements in sports.

She thanked the Karic family for this prestigious award saying: “For many years I competed under five flags but the most of my medals I won when my country was going through a difficult period. I would not change that for anything in a world because I’ve given people smile back to their faces “, said Jasna Shekaric promising that she wont stop, not yet.

Journalist Ruzha Cirkovic is this year’s prize winner for accomplishments in Journalism, Publication and Publishing.

“I am very greatful to the Karic Foundation for being in such a company of great people. These people have made a timeless and everlasting contribution to Serbia and If I may say I’m happy to have done it, too.”said Ruzha Cirkovic.

Muniba Mazari, a social activist and motivational speaker, is this year’s laureate of the “Karic Brothers” Award for humanitarian activities.

“Thank you Karic Foundation for honouring me the Award but it would be nothing without my mother, family and friends. I dedicate this award to all the people in the world who have experienced any sort of discrimination and have been convinced to be less worthy human beings. Let’s hope that tomorrow brings better future, that there will be no discrimination because of the race or disability. Let’s be there for one another and show more kindness and consideration because at the end of the day that’s all we need to make this world a more beautiful place to live. Let’s be human.”, said Muniba Mazari.  At the end, she sang a song in her mother tongue for she believes that music and singing does not recognize the importance of languages.

The opera diva Jadranka Jovanovic was presented next as the prize winner for outstanding achievements in art.

Due to her forthcoming performance she was not able to come to the award ceremony but she has received the award at the Karic Foundation. She expressed gratitude to the Karic Foundation on this occasion saying how happy she is to share the same positive energy with the Karics.

The “Obilic” choir performed the song “This is Serbia” in the honor of Valentina Ivanovna Matviyenko Chairwoman of the Russian Federation Council,  the country’s third-highest elected office making her the number three person of importance in Russia right after President Vladimir Putin and Prime Minister Dmitry Medvedev. Such a high position in Russian politics was preceded by a very convincing and compelling biography. The Karic Brothers Award for strengthening the peace, cooperation and friendship among nations was honoured to the first of the pleiad of Russian powerful women.

“Dear friends, I speak from my heart. I would like to thank the Karic Foundation for such a high assessment of my work. The prize is honorable and obliges me to continue with the realization of the goals Russia and Putin set in supporting the values ​​on our planet. I dedicate it of course  to the people of Serbia. ” said Matvienko and commended the efforts of the Karic brothers in achieving  their goals so far.

She thanked the Karic Foundation once again saying that Russia has always had the utmost respect for Serbia pointing out that there are not many countries that Russia has such a brotherly relations which is for every respect.

“I have to say that there’s always that warm familiar feeling when meeting with Serbian officials. Our two nations are binded by traditional family values and mutual support during the most difficult times through our history. I still have tears in my eyes and feel like something’s stuck in my throat after watching Bogolyub Karic reunited with his mother. That’s what binds us together. Contribution to the preservation of the spiritual values ​​of the Russian and Serbian Orthodox churches and as an example serves our joint work on the St Sava Temple. We were side by side fighiting to save the independence of Serbia during both wars “, said Matviyenko interrupted several times during her speech with thunderous applause.

“Serbia continuously demonstrates respect for Russia. The Russian people will never forget the NATO aggression against Yugoslavia whose consequences are still being felt by the secession of Kosovo and Metohiya. Our two countries have survived the hardest times and the Russian-Serbian alliance is a symbol of stability and security in the Balkans and Europe”, Matviyenko told at the National Theatre. gala event.

Beside the academic choir “Obilic“, guests enjoyed the children’s choir “Horislavci” singing as well as the opera singer Marko Pantelic, maestro’ Bora Dugic accompanied by Boban Prodanovic on the accordion and Slobodan Markovic on the keyboards and, at the end of the official ceremony, the choir “Slavista” sang a Russian song. Deyan Pantelic led us through the gala evening program of the 20th Karic Brothers Award Ceremony.

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