Millfield Sixth Former, Ned St Johnston Winton, recently joined UNICEF Goodwill Ambassador Liam Neeson in northern Brazil to highlight the growing Venezuelan migrant crisis that is seeing thousands of children and families flee their homeland in search of support.
The sixteen-year-old, a family friend of Mr Neeson, visited various shelters in Pacaraima, on the Brazilian/Venezualan border and the city of Boa Vista, to highlight the charity’s plea to the international community of the urgent need to increase support to the thousands of refugee and migrant children fleeing Venezuela, into Latin America, the USA and the Caribbean.
Ned, who is in Lower Sixth and is studying A level Politics, is very keen to pursue Anthropology in the future. He gave the children notepads, pens and pencils donated, by Millfield, as gifts to help them study whilst in the camps. Ned also gave a talk about his experience during a Sixth Form assembly at Millfield when he returned from the trip and will be performing this talk to other year groups throughout the term.
Millfield, in Somerset, was recently accredited as a Bronze Rights Respecting School with UNICEF UK, which means the school is recognised as a safe and inspiring place for students to learn to be responsible, active global citizens.
Ned says, “This was my first experience volunteering with UNICEF – hopefully one of many – and seeing the refugee crisis and the work being done by UNICEF has had a profound impact on me. The children – and adults – were all so grateful for the small gifts that we gave them and wanted to share their stories and be heard. The fact they retain their spirits in the face of huge, unimaginable difficulties was extremely humbling, and UNICEF, Liam and I all hope that the visit will put a much-needed spotlight on the dire humanitarian crisis happening in Venezuela and encourage others to help.”
“UNICEF are at the frontline in so many parts of the world, trying to help and protect the most vulnerable victims of any crisis, children. I was so lucky to be given the opportunity to briefly be part of what they do and see how fortunate we are in this country.”