On the 8th of June at 22:30 in the London Gazette my name was included in Her Majesty’s Birthday Honours List for the award of an OBE. To say I am honoured and privileged does not quite describe how I feel.
This honour goes to one man, however Global Acts of Unity is more than one man. It is the many members of the team that do all the hard work in organising, planning and booking. Without their help I would have floundered ages ago. This Award goes to every single one of the team that has worked with me since the beginning. My team have supported me in so many ways and I recognise their indispensable work on GAU’s behalf. Many of these hidden workers have become trusted friends and part of the GAU family.
The OBE also goes to all my family, my fiancée who is essential to GAU. My sons along with my Aunt and Uncle who support me without question. I know that my late parents would have been so proud for me. My brother David murdered by Isis in 2014 will be having a good laugh, he will be saying “Nice one Bruv now get the beers in.” Dave this award is for you as well, without your inspiration and devotion to humanitarian work I would have nothing.
The OBE also reflects on the thousands of students that have been part of my presentation and have taken that choice of not to hate. The hundreds of students who have contacted me with questions and messages also play a big part and to those students who have taken up the GAU Ambassador Challenge who are all making a difference.
This award is also a reflection on the many thousands of people, organisations who are in our communities doing some incredible work in the name of tolerance, unity and the rejection of hatred.
Lastly honour goes to every single person in our country who has again rejected the hatred that the terrorists, extremists and hatemongers seek to sow division in our society. Led by the people of Manchester and London you are the real heroes.