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Charity boss Christina gets humanitarian award

She is regarded by many as Ireland's Mother Teresa, and children's charity boss Christina Noble has now joined the ranks of the world's leading humanitarians.

Following in the footsteps of Bishop Desmond Tutu, Christina has been awarded the prestigious Albert Schweitzer Prize for Humanitarianism.

Previous winners also include former US presidents Jimmy Carter and George WH Bush.

Christina said she was bowled over by the honour.

"I am very grateful for this award and want to thank Maurice Buckley, Sharon Kinsella and everyone else involved for this wonderful acknowledgment," she said.

"I felt truly inspired by the young people I met at the ceremony, they are just amazing youngsters and fill me with hope for the future."

The founder of children's charity the Christina Noble Foundation received the award from Hollywood actor and LA Confidential star Matt McCoy in Dublin last week.

Maurice Buckley, who is the president of the Irish Chamber of Commerce USA, co-presented the prize.

Christina hopes it will help to raise awareness of her charity.

She said that fundraising for the foundation, which began in 1989, is still difficult.

"I have sleepless nights and I have no treasures to sell so I pray to God to help me out," said the Dubliner.

She gave an emotional speech and received a standing ovation when she was presented with the Schweitzer Prize.

MOVIE

The trailer for a new movie about her life, Noble, was also shown.

Noble opens in cinemas on September 19, and Deirdre O'Kane plays Christina.

The movie won the Panavision Spirit Award at the Santa Barbara International Film Festival this year, and it was O'Kane who convinced Christina to get the film made.

"People were after me for years for my story looking to make movies," the charity boss said earlier this year.

"Big companies in America came to me in the early 1990s but I said no. I even said no initially when I was asked this time by Deirdre.

"I finally agreed after two years but I said the actors had to be Irish."

Ruth Negga plays a young Christine in the film.

jfegan@herald.ie


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