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Christian charity wins Spain’s Princess of Asturias award

by Premier Journalist
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Mary's Meals

Mary’s Meals, a Christian charity that works feeding schoolchildren facing extreme poverty across the world, has been awarded a Princess of Asturias award.

The Scottish charity, which started as Scottish International Relief in 1992 before taking on its current name in 2002, provides meals to school-aged kids in 18 different countries.

Magnus MacFarlane-Barrow, founder of Mary’s Meals, said: “We are deeply honoured and grateful to be chosen for this hugely prestigious award. We will be happy to accept it on behalf of all those people who are working with Mary’s Meals all over the world to ensure that every child in this world might receive a daily meal in their place of education.”

The Princess of Asturias Awards have been presented since 1981 by H.M. King Felipe of Spain and are considered among the most important in the global cultural agenda.

The charity was awarded the Princess of Asturias Concord’s prize for its “exemplary dedication to helping resolve some of the world’s most pressing problems”.

The jury commended the charity’s signature low-cost model which allows them to feed a child every day for a full school year for a little over £19.

The Concord Prize is one of eight awards, including for the arts, sciences and sports, handed out annually by the foundation named for Spanish Crown Princess Leonor.  

Previous winners of the Concord Prize include Japanese architect Shigeru Ban, Spanish chef José Andrés, and Spain’s health workers during the coronavirus pandemic.

MacFarlane-Barrow continued: “In a special way, we accept the award on behalf of the thousands of people living in poverty who volunteer their time each day as a gift to cook and serve meals to the hungry children in their communities. And we look forward very much to the ceremony in Oviedo in October! Thank you on behalf of the children.”

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