March 16, 2011

Yoani Sanchez receives International Women of Courage award


Last week, in a ceremony that took place on International Women’s Day at the State Department, Secretary of State Hillary Clinton and First Lady Michelle Obama honored this year’s recipients of the International Women of Courage Awards. We were thrilled to learn that Yoani Sanchez, blogger and author of the forthcoming Melville House book Havana Real, was among the recipients.

Unfortunately, though, Yoani couldn’t be there to accept the award. As is their custom, the Cuban government denied her request for an exit visa. (Looking on the bright side, Yoani has a nice stack of these entertaining denials now, because she wins a lot of awards.)

Nonetheless, Yoani accepted the prize remotely and is donating the prize money ($1,000) to the children’s cancer charity Los niños de Carmen y Rey. You can watch her deliver her eloquent and moving acceptance speech in the form of the following video, and see for yourself why we’re so honored to promote her message here.