I needed to understand the children better; I needed to discover why they would seemingly run away from what we had to offer them and to discover the right pathways for them to make the right choices.
New York, New York (PRWEB) September 30, 2014
World of Children Award (http://www.worldofchildren.org) will honor Gregory John Smith – founder of the nonprofit organizations Children at Risk Foundation and Rede Cultural Beija-Flor – in New York City on November 6, 2014, for his work rescuing children from the streets of Brazil and preventing them from ending up on the streets in the first place.
On his 40th birthday, Gregory sold his house and possessions in Norway to help street children in Brazil. He started out by living on the streets himself in order to gain insight into why children live there.
“I was disturbed with their reasoning for being on the streets in the first place and the fact that they always expressed that it was fine to be on the streets when in reality, I was constantly witness to many tragic events and the sad consequences the streets had on their lives,” Gregory said. “I needed to understand the children better; I needed to discover why they would seemingly run away from what we had to offer them and to discover the right pathways for them to make the right choices.”
This experience helped Gregory realize that rescue and rehabilitation, which is necessary and widely practiced, does not deal with the core issue: prevention. He founded Rede Cultural Beija-Flor, sister organization to the Children at Risk Foundation, to not only enable street children to take control of their own lives, but prevent children from ending up on the street in the first place by helping them find a positive way to survive and thrive in the community.
Today, Gregory is still living in Brazil, where he has impacted the lives of thousands of children.
“We are deeply inspired by the remarkable contributions our Honorees have made to changing the trajectory of children’s lives for the better,” said Harry Leibowitz, World of Children Award Co-Founder and Co-Chair.
Gregory plans to use funding from World of Children Award to provide life-changing scholarships for young people. To learn more about Gregory, visit http://www.worldofchildren.org/honoree/gregory-john-smith
About World of Children Award
World of Children® Award improves the lives of vulnerable children by funding and elevating the most effective changemakers for children worldwide.
Since 1998, World of Children Award has granted more than $6 million in cash grants and program support to 100 humanitarian leaders who are the driving force behind programs serving children worldwide. The organization’s exhaustive research and vetting of individuals has been hailed by leading philanthropic organizations. The media often refers to World of Children Award as the Nobel Prize for child advocacy.
World of Children Award has been featured on The New York Times, The Huffington Post, People, Town & Country, and Harper’s Bazaar. World of Children Award Honorees have also been featured by The New York Times, CNN, The Ellen DeGeneres Show, Fast Company Magazine, People, Glamour, TEEN Vogue, TIME for Kids, USA Today and the Christian Science Monitor, among several other national and international media.
Most recently, The Huffington Post named World of Children Award’s Co-Founders, Harry Leibowitz and Kay Isaacson-Leibowitz, one of the United States’ most inspiring “power couples” for their lifetime commitment to improving the lives of vulnerable children around the world.