CHILDREN’S RIGHTS CAMPAIGNER
Christina Noble (OBE) is internationally recognised as a passionate advocate for children’s rights. She has dedicated her life to stopping the exploitation of street children and impoverished kids everywhere to show the world they are a vital part of humanity. Her own story is the stuff of nightmares and dreams. A traumatic early childhood was spent in dire circumstances, growing up in the Dublin slums, losing her mother at ten years of age, separated from her siblings and spending years in orphanages where she was abused. Later, there were periods of homelessness spent living hand-to- mouth on the streets, believing her siblings to be dead. Even though the surviving ones were eventually reunited, the pain never went away. But her bruising life, and her compassionate heart, would serve the world well.
Pictures of distressed Vietnamese children on television during the war made a deep impression on her. She dreamed about them. With her own children reared, she set out for Vietnam in 1989 to help, with only a suitcase and a couple of hundred pounds. She started by working with street children living near her hotel and then moved into orphanages. Setting up the Christina Noble Children’s Foundation in Ho Chi Minh City (formally Saigon), she expanded it across Vietnam and later moved into Mongolia. Known to the children she serves as Mama Tina, Christina risked her own life and survived beatings while rescuing children from the sex trade. Christina saved hundreds of thousands of street children from poverty, neglect and abuse. She truly is an inspirational and courageous person.