A former Cheshire student has been to Buckingham Palace to pick up her MBE from the Prince of Wales.
Former Winsford resident and Sir John Deane’s student Amy Hathaway (née Lithgow), 38, was awarded an MBE in the 2017 Queen’s Birthday Honours List.
Amy, who took A levels at Sir John Deane’s in English, psychology and biology in the mid-1990s and went on to study education at the University of Durham, is the founder and project director of the Forever Angels Baby Home in Mwanza, Tanzania and has received the MBE for services to providing interim and community care for abandoned and vulnerable infants in Mwanza.
Through a decade of selfless and dedicated hard work, she has created a home for abandoned and at-risk infants which has saved and transformed lives and had a significant impact on the local community.
Amy had first experienced the terrible impact that acute deprivation has on young children when she volunteered over two summers at Romanian orphanages.
Then in 2002, when she was working as an international teacher in Tanzania, she became aware of the huge challenges faced by local hospitals and social services in dealing with large numbers of abandoned or motherless babies.
Amy was so moved, she gave up her job and began to follow her vision in a full time, voluntary capacity.
Through her strength of personality and powers of persuasion, by 2006 she had enough support and funds to buy, renovate and staff an old hospital building.
The first child arrived at the Baby Home at the end of 2006 and now, ten years later, a safe and loving home has provided more than 350 orphans with a safe haven.
The charity has grown so much and now has a pre-school, a sensory room, a specialised facility for premature infants.
In addition there is a rapidly expanding community outreach programme, Maisha Matters, which provides life-saving nutrition for orphan babies, supports their relatives to set up sustainable businesses and so empowers them to support their own families now and into the future.
Amy said: “I am overwhelmed and delighted that this honour will put Forever Angels in the spotlight. Our work in Tanzania is incredible and only possible because of the passion and dedication of my amazing family, trustees, volunteers and staff. I am thankful to all of them for creating this with me.”
For further information on Amy and the work of Forever Angels visit: http://foreverangels.org/