Creative arts in Uganda
601. Michaela Foster Marsh
A Scottish volunteer has founded a charity working to improve the lives of children in Uganda.
The charity, Starchild, has completed a number of projects, including building the first ever arts school in the country giving young people an opportunity to explore their creativity and unlock hidden potentials.
Michaela Foster Marsh, from Glasgow, was inspired to visit Uganda after her adopted Ugandan brother Frankie tragically passed away. Noticing there were many initiatives to support young people with an aptitude for medicine and law but not many alternatives for those with other talents, singer Michaela set up a successful arts school with adult evening classes and opportunities to sell the crafts created. Michaela’s award coincides with her annual art auction fundraiser.
In a personal letter to Michaela, Prime Minister Theresa May said:
“In memory of your brother Frankie you have given hundreds of Ugandan families the opportunity to explore the creative arts. The ‘Starchild’ charity, you have founded is a wonderful tribute to his life”.
“When my adopted Ugandan brother Frankie died in a house fire, I could never have imagined that I would eventually set up a charity and work with vulnerable children in Uganda. Now especially, Starchild has realised our dream to built a School for Creative Arts in Uganda. Starchild’s moto is to Find the Star in Every Child. We believe that every child deserves to be loved, cared for, fed and educated. Although working in Uganda is challenging, Starchild is a joy to do. But I could not do what Starchild does without my wonderful team of board members and volunteers who dedicate their individual skills to the charity.
It is an absolute honour to receive this award, and in so doing, also honour the memory of my brother. It is a privilege to work with vulnerable children in Uganda. Every time I hold, or work with one of the orphans I think, any one of them could have been Frankie – that is what keeps me going and inspires me, as does this award.”