18th October, 2018

This week it was fantastic to see our founder, Carmel McConnell MBE, honoured with the Women of the Year Campaigner Award. The Women of the Year Awards recognise more than 400 women as ‘Women of Achievement’, and six are honoured with Women of the Year Awards for their selfless dedication to their fields of work. In Carmel’s case, this was of course, campaigning to provide free and healthy breakfasts to schools in disadvantaged areas of the UK.

The award ceremony was held at the Intercontinental Hotel in London. Carmel’s award was presented by Fearne Cotton. There were many famous faces at the event including Kate Adie, Claudia Winkleman, Victoria Coren-Mitchell and Mariella Frostrup, all celebrating women who are making a mark on history.

Media coverage of the Awards provided a fantastic opportunity for Carmel to spread the word further about the aims of Magic Breakfast and how the National School Breakfast Programme is helping schools in deprived areas.

ITV London News, Sky News and the i newspaper all covered Carmel’s award. The ITV News crew filmed at one of our long-standing partner schools – Ambler Primary School in Islington.

Interviewed at the school breakfast club Carmel said, “I don’t want any child to miss out on their future success because they can’t learn, because of hunger, not in the sixth richest economy in the world that’s just not right.”

This was backed up by Headteacher Juliet Benis who explained that “lots of children go home at the end of the day and don’t necessarily have a meal … so coming in and having breakfast means they’re not just waiting until lunch to eat again.” The children were asked what difference attending breakfast club had made to them, one girl replied, “we are a bit better in lessons after we’ve had some food”.

Back in the studio Carmel told Nina Hossain “it is a very simple thing, I am very grateful to get the recognition, but I am just hoping that I can use to it to invite more support and get it sorted out permanently.”

Carmel was interviewed on Sky News the following morning which gave her another terrific opportunity to call out to politicians to say, “it’s not rocket science, let’s get a permanent National School Breakfast Programme.”

Congratulations to Carmel on her highly deserved award.