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Correspondent receives Commonwealth honour for youth work
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Correspondent receives Commonwealth honour for youth work

Eric (centre) receives his award from Commonwealth Deputy Secretary-General Josephine Ojiambo (L) and Grace Cerere of the Kenya High Commission to the UK (R).

Eric Nehemiah, a Commonwealth Correspondent from Kenya, has been named as the 2016 Commonwealth Africa Youth Worker of the Year.

He is the co-founder of the Mathare Foundation, a Kenyan NGO that has supported over 100 disadvantaged young people living in slums to channel their talents through photography and art.

At an awards ceremony at the Commonwealth Secretariat in London on 10 November, Eric and four other outstanding youth workers were recognised for their use of sport and creative arts to inspire and support the development of young people. The regional Youth Workers of the Year for Asia, Caribbean and Americas, Europe and the Pacific were from Pakistan, Belize, the UK and Tonga respectively.

On receiving his award, Eric said, “Being recognised as the overall winner for the Africa region is not something I take for granted – it’s not about me, however, it’s about the other 60 young people that I represent. It’s because of them that I am here.”

Suleman Arshad from Pakistan was named as Commonwealth Asia Youth Worker of the Year, and Manuela Lue from Malta was announced as Youth Worker of the Year for the Caribbean and Americas. Robin Lockhart from the UK is Commonwealth Europe Youth Worker 2016, and Joshua Savieti is Youth Worker of the Year for the Pacific.

The theme for Youth Work Week 2016, running from 7-13 November, is ‘Empowering young people through sport and arts’, acknowledging the creative and innovative techniques that youth workers employ to deliver effective youth empowerment programmes.

Read a selection of Eric’s work here.

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