19 Nov 2009
Camila Batmanghelidjh is the founder and director of youth charity, Kids Company and has been a psychotherapist and advocate for vulnerable children for more than twenty years.
Montessori St Nicholas, the UK’s leading Montessori charity is delighted to announce Camila as main speaker at their annual MCI Graduation Ceremony and MEAB School Accreditation Awards on Friday 4th December at the Institute of Education. The Awards Ceremony celebrates the achievements of Montessori Centre International graduates and Montessori accredited schools.
The Kids Company, founded in 1996, provides practical, emotional and educational support to thousands of vulnerable children and young people. The charity aims to step in and take over from where a family has failed.
Many of the 13,500 children who seek refuge at the centre have experienced horrendous trauma and neglect at home. They often live in severe deprivation with little or no support from the adults in their family.
Kids Company hands them a much needed lifeline and provides an environment where relationships of empathy and attachment can be fostered. It operates a street level drop-in centre, a post-16 educational institution, therapy centre and works with over 30 schools in the provision of therapeutic and social work services.
In 2007, it was awarded the Liberty and Justice Human Rights Award and the results speak volumes. 91% of the children at the centre return to education, reducing
crime and drug abuse by 90%.
Camila’s work of putting the child first resonates with Montessori’s child-centred approach to education.
Maria Montessori started her work in 1907 at a day centre in Rome’s poor slum district, working with disadvantaged children. Today’s Montessori has gone back to its roots, with four state primary schools and one Sure Start nursery now adopting the approach - with future projects in the pipeline.
Camila says, “The support we offer is tailored to the needs of each individual child.”
Philip Bujak, CEO of Montessori St Nicholas says, “I am delighted that Camila can join us at the event. The unique child is at the heart of Montessori philosophy, and so we have a shared voice and vision in so much of our work.”