17-year-old Maya Nanan of Support Autism T&T is a recipient of the 2020 Diana Award.
Established in memory of the late Diana, Princess of Wales, it is awarded to young persons between the ages of 9-25 for their social action or humanitarian work.
Ms Nanan receives the Award for advocating and creating opportunities for those living with Autism in T&T.
She is specifically being recognized for establishing the Siblings and Friends Network which is the organization’s youth arm.
Ms Nanan says she is very humbled by the honour, which reassures her that the work being done by her and her team is relevant and needed.
She also hopes the award can inspire other youth in T&T, since she truly believes that young people can change society.
Ms Nanan was still in primary school when she became a part of Support Autism T&T which was founded by her aunt, Dr Radica Mahase.
She wanted to create opportunities for her brother Rahul, and others with Autism.
She also wanted her friends and other young people to volunteer – this is what inspired her to establish the Siblings and Friends Network five years ago.
Looking to the future, Ms Nanan wants to continue building this special network, training other youth volunteers to become advocates, and creating opportunities for those with Autism and other special needs.