New Years Honours 2024: Boss of charity that donates shoes made OBE

OBE medal
Image caption,Sal’s Shoes founder Camilla Bowry, of Surrey, has been appointed an OBE in the New Year Honours list

The founder of a charity which distributes second-hand shoes to deprived children has been appointed an OBE in the New Year Honours list.

Sal’s Shoes founder Camilla Bowry said the charity had seen a “huge surge in demand” amid the cost-of-living crisis.

The 43-year-old, of Oxted, Surrey, was honoured for services to young people, education and the environment.

Others from Surrey recognised in the list include charity founder Dorothy Wagstaff and Lioness Millie Bright.

In nine years, Sal’s Shoes has redistributed more than five million pairs of shoes to children from struggling families across 61 countries.

“Over the last few years, we’ve seen a huge surge in demand,” Ms Bowry said.

“It’s the cost-of-living crisis. People are worried about feeding their families and heating their homes and winter coats and school shoes.”

On being made an OBE, she said her family will only learn she has been honoured when the list is published.

“I’ve seen it as a personal challenge and I’ve been the best secret keeper ever,” she said.

“I don’t think they’ll believe it. I think it will be lovely for my mum and dad. I’m quite excited for them to know about it.”

She added: “As someone working in the charity sector, any acknowledgment is quite uncomfortable when really all we’re able to achieve is down to the less fortunate position of others. That said, I think it validates our work and is one for the whole team.”

Millie Bright after winning Euro 2022 with England
Image caption,Footballer Millie Bright, of Redhill, Surrey, has been appointed an OBE

Meanwhile, Chelsea and England footballer Millie Bright, of Redhill, has been appointed an OBE for services to football after the Lionesses finished runners-up to Spain in the Women’s World Cup.

Also included on the list are Iain Reeve, from Godalming, who has been recognised for services to rail aid in Ukraine, the founder of charity Cascaid, Dorothy Wagstaff, from Virginia Water, who has been recognised for services to charity and Charlotte Beardmore, from Camberley, who is the executive director at The Society of Radiographers and has been honoured for services to radiography.

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