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Street Child Champions Award 2011
The 2011 Consortium for Street Children Street Child Champions awards aims to acknowledge the unsung heroes who are making a real difference to street children's lives.
We asked our network of 69 members, who operate in more than 130 countries, to nominate people - either from their own, or a partner organisation - who they believe fit the bill. That person could be someone doing grass-roots work out in the field; a community leader, policeman, or politician who advocates on behalf of street children, or a street child themselves.
The winner, selected by an independent panel, was announced at the inaugural Street Child Champions awards ceremony on 20th October. Congratulations to Patrick Shananan who received £1,000 to go towards the Patrick Shanahan Fund being set up by StreetInvest for street children. As the winner, Patrick is our newest Honorary Member of CSC. All 19 nominations are highly commended for their outstanding contribution to street children and are profiled below.
Fr Patrick Joseph Shanahan, StreetInvest, President and Co-founder
Patrick Shanahan has been working in support of street children since the late 1980's. He co-founded Urban Aid in 1987 followed by establishing the first local charities working exclusively in support of street children; Catholic Action for Street Children (CAS) and Street Girls Aid (S'Aid). In the early 1990's Patrick founded Street Child Africa. StreetInvest was co-founded by Patrick in 2008 and has expanded within Africa and will soon be piloted in Asia, while research has also begun for work in the UK. Recently, Patrick spoke and was a panellist at the UN Human Rights Day of Discussion on the Rights of Children Living and Working on the Street on behalf of the Consortium and street children.
Gladys Babirye, Amazing Children Uganda, Volunteer Project Coordinator
Gladys Babirye has forged a community where music, dance and creativity bond the children together and Gladys' passion for education is reflected in the children; their thirst for learning resulted in ACU finding sponsors for 27 of the 63 children ACU first met in 2007. Gladys attends college herself whilst also managing the care of children during the holidays and ACU's accounts in Uganda.
Juracy Bahia, Viva a Vida (Live Life), Project Manager
When funding problems forced the closure of Viva a Vida's essential drug rehabilitation programme Juracy Bahia worked to ensure the aftercare programme was maintained, providing support to street children who had gone through rehabilitation. The aftercare programme continues to provide support for 40 street children. Juracy is now manager of Viva a Vida whilst also studying to become a social worker.
Maggie Crewes, Retrak Ethiopia
Maggie Crewes has single-handedly pioneered work in Ethiopia whilst also being a member of the organisation's Executive Team and leading on strategic planning for the whole organisation. She is fluent in Amharic having taken the time and trouble to study it to communicate with the children.
Ashley Damewood, Street Child Africa, Overseas Programme Officer
Ashley's remarkable ability to connect with young people has given her the insight to create a credible approach to working with child headed households in Jinja, Uganda. Ashley has made a significant difference to the lives of the children within this project, by introducing a sustainable strategy and a new partnership, but also through her efforts to sensitise others to the issues facing displaced Karamojongs. This year as part of a new strategy, she single-handedly organised a workshop with twenty NGOs to develop an ‘orphan competent community.' This was the first workshop of its kind locally; and has resulted in a firm commitment to regular collaboration and improved service delivery.
Duncan Dyason, Street Kids Direct (and founder of Toybox), Trustee
Duncan Dyason brings together organisations in Guatemala that can work together to tackle issues. Over the last 20 years he has built up trusting relationships with street children and also gave direct input into the discussions and shaping of policy of the UN Resolution on Street Children.
Badiaa Essamer, Morrocan Children's Trust, Street Child Project, Social Worker
Badiaa Essamer leads the team of social workers for MCT's street children project, after having spent 6 months realising the research project that shaped MCT's project plan. Badiaa has helped several children to obtain ID papers, assisting families with this complicated process. She advocates decent healthcare for children, for example establishing free aid from local doctors. From September Badiaa will be leading a women's group, helping mothers in areas such as sexual health and children's rights. Badiaa shows that even in conservative Muslim societies women can be successful community figures.
Victoria Ferguson, Glads House, Founder
Victoria Ferguson is the founder of Glad's House and splits her time between fundraising in the UK and working on the ground in Kenya. Glad's House has given children the opportunity to experience childhood pursuits, such as playing sport, and has provided young adults with education and training. Glad's house has opened businesses to offer employment to these young adults, with opportunities ranging from a bicycle repair shop to a cyber café.
Maureen Forrest, Hope Foundation, Honorary Director/ Founder
Maureen Forrest is the founder and honorary director of the Hope Foundation and continues to be the face of change for so many children on the streets of Kolkata. Her fearlessness and compassion drives a staff team of over 700 on the ground and she continues to inspire both young and old who engage with HOPE, both as beneficiaries and as volunteers.
Cesar Garcia, Viva Guatemala, Street Operations
Cesar Garcia displays humility and willingness to get involved in any activity that a child might be doing, be it cleaning car windows at traffic lights or eating leftovers from the rubbish dump. He describes his approach: "The only way to get to know their reality is to make yourself become like one of them."
Sanjay Gupta, CHETNA, Founder and Director
Sanjay Gupta is the founder and director of CHETNA. He developed participatory programmes before most funders in the UK and set up the first Federation of Street and Working Children, now considered one the most powerful child led drivers of change in the region. He has led innovative programmes ranging from theatre, to live demonstrations, to print media, alongside projects involving direct interventions and advocacy, bringing about change for children whilst shifting police perceptions.
Luca Marinacci, Don Bosco and War Child, VIS Volunteer
Luca Marinacci has worked with War Child UK and Don Bosco to provide services for street children at Gahinja House in Goma, DRC. A new programme for street girls under 17 years of age was created during his mandate at Don Bosco, helping young girls reintegrate their families and communities and go back to school. He has contributed to raising awareness with events and powerful pictures of street children realising positive achievements, on stage, in sports, as street performers in music and circus acts, and other cultural events.
Ellie Maxwell, Firefly International, Founder
Ellie Maxwell set up Firefly to provide a place of refuge for vulnerable children affected by the devastating conflict in Bosnia. She built it from the ground up, working alongside staff and young people in Brčko to set up three centres where Serb and Croat, Christian and Muslim young people could play and learn together. It grew into an international charity, with projects now in countries such as Syria, Afghanistan, Iraq, Lebanon and the UK. Ellie sadly passed away in 2008, but her work is remembered by all who knew her and those whose lives she impacted on.
Evans Munyinyi, Action for Children in Conflict, Operations Manager
Evans Munyinyi is local to the area he works and was himself a vulnerable child; he had no access to funds to continue his education and instead volunteered for different organisations where his natural abilities and dedication saw him promoted without qualifications. He plays a crucial role in driving AfCiC's programmes forward as well as establishing innovative ways to assist street children. Between April 2010 - March 2011 Evans played a key role in directly assisting 3,612 street and acutely vulnerable children to access support.
Dr. Esther Victor Onoyom-Ita, Society for Youth Development and Rescue Initiative (SYDRI), Founder
Dr. Onoyom-Ita is working in the extremely challenging region of Niger Delta, Nigeria. Dr. Onoyom-Ita's approach is still relatively new in Nigeria, providing a year's residence to no more than 30 street children who are prepared for either reunification or fostering, whilst also feeding and counselling street children on the street. SYDRI also provides support in the form of micro grants and recently used part of a small grant awarded by Stepping Stones Nigeria to invest in materials for children's bead work classes.
Lindsay Robertson, Street Child of Sierra Leone
Lindsay Robertson contributed two years of purely voluntary service, including her first five months with SCOSL, continuing with part time employment and working 30+ hours a week for SCOSL. Lindsay has written reports, joined project planning trips and bridged SCOSL in London with their local partner. She personally led the development of ‘SCOSL Enterprises', a chain of projects generating thousands of pounds for the charity.
Eve Sao Sarin, M'Lop Tapang Centre for Street Children
Eve Sao Sarin helped set up M'Lop Tapang in 2003 and has since helped build a team of 145 staff members and 217 volunteers, from just 14 staff members and 6 volunteers in 2005. Sarin has developed important relationships with local government offices and mobilised all sectors of the local community in a push to reduce negative perceptions of street children. Amongst other achievements, Sarin has organised an annual awareness raising carnival and established volunteer groups to teach communities about child rights and protection.
Sarah Thomas de Benitez, Juconi, Founder
Sarah Thomas de Benitez has been working for street children for 26 years. In 1989 she founded Juconi Mexico and in 1995 set-up Juconi Ecuador. Today both Juconi´s are award-winning organisations renowned for their best practice. Sarah undertook an MSc in Public Policy and a Phd enabling her to use her field experience to advocate for appropriate policies and practices for all street children. She has published numerous research articles and as a consultant Sarah´s work spans building capacity in NGOs to providing technical assistance to governments around the world. She currently is currently lead consultant on an OHCHR study on the rights of children working and/or living on the street.
Mutani Yangwe, Caretakers of the Environment, Founder
Since 2005 Mutani Yangwe has developed a range of programmes for street children, including Caretakers work with local government and the communities to ensure their involvement towards the development of their community. Mutani has also developed the Kuleana Street Children Centre into a highly beneficial rehabilitation and reunification centre. The TSC Football Academy programme, a new initiative within Tanzania, directly helps over 100 children and additional children through the outreach programme. Mutani has also led and directed a vocational cooking training programme and the construction of a restaurant, which will assist towards funding the street children centre.
© Consortium for Street Children (UK) - Registered in England Company No: 03040697 Charity Number: 1046579
Registered Office: Consortium for Street Children, The Oasis Centre, 75 Westminster Bridge Road, London, SE1 7HS, UK