Anne-Marie Tipper, a therapist from Berkshire who co-founded a children’s home in Kenya, has worked for years under the radar.
But this month she and her colleagues found themselves catapulted into the spotlight after being nominated as one of the 15 causes the Duke and Duchess of Sussex — also known as Meghan Markle and Prince Harry — have highlighted on their Instagram account.
Tipper has since been doing global media interviews and told the BBC on Aug. 19 that she hopes the endorsement will mean they can increase awareness and help more children.
Tipper set up the organisation, called Rafiki Mwema, after visiting Kenya in 2005 and finding that children who had survived sexual and physical abuse were not getting the support they needed in orphanages.
She decided to put her professional skills to use and raised funding for a therapeutic play centre to help them deal with trauma, followed by a children’s home which now looks after 70 children.
This month we turned to you for ideas of accounts to follow featuring people, organisations and causes that you find inspiring or noteworthy. Thank you to each and every one of you who contributed! Many of you have suggested that we use this month as an opportunity to highlight lesser known organisations and shine a light on those working hard behind the scenes that may not get the level of attention that they so rightly deserve. These accounts showcase those persevering at the grassroots level, connecting our global community through a shared lens of giving back and helping one another. We were so happy to learn about them and are now able to share them with you! Thank you for being part of this collective conversation with us; we hope everyone has enjoyed discovering many of these accounts and engaging with each other on how we can all be Forces For Change. •All photos used above are from the accounts we are now following•
The success of Rafiki Mwema has led to another form of Royal endorsement of sorts, as one of the young people the organisation worked with, Peter Njuguna, recently trained as a chef in the UK before being offered a job at the Royal Military Academy in Sandhurst.
Meghan and Harry put out a call to their 9.3 million Instagram followers last month asking them to recommend causes that were worthy of more attention. Taking those suggestions on board, they chose 15 organisations hailing from all over the world that they then boosted with a follow and a photo.
Part 1 of a clip of our Anne Marie & Peter on @bbc 😳 a couple of days ago after our @sussexroyal excitement. It’s beyond exciting now guys! What’s next !?! Make sure you watch the next clip to see Peter 😍 They are currently on their way to Australia for the training workshops. Are you in the Gold Coast area? DM is for more info #rafikimwema #sussexroyal #forceforchange
Each organisation has been nominated for being a “force for change.”
They include Art of Hope, a nonprofit providing art therapy for Syrian refugees in Lebanon; a bee conservation charity called Beecause; and a rehabilitation programme called Pawsitive Change that pairs rescue dogs with inmates from Californian prisons.
Another UK-based initiative the Royal couple chose is Tiny Tickers – a six-person team working with health care professionals to increase early detection of heart conditions in newborns and infants. The charity has since said that they saw a huge increase in social media activity within hours as a result of the Instagram recognition.
Pawsitive Change was designed to fundamentally improve rehabilitation in prisons and juvenile facilities by providing anti-recidivism training to help break the cycle of incarceration! Pawsitive Change teaches inmates valuable skills to kickstart an entire career once they’ve been released and infuses emotional intelligence with self awareness to show how our energy affects others around us. What started at Cal City Correctional Facilty 3.5 years ago, has grown to 3 other high security prisons as well as the pathways program for incarcerated girls—the only program of its kind in America. To give others access to our program, we are dearly hoping you’ll help us spread the message and give if you can! We have successfully graduated hundreds of men/ girls as well as hundreds of their canine compadres! Of the 20 men who have graduated our program and been released, precisely ZERO have reoffended and most have established themselves as professionals in the pet services industry, allowing the vice-grip of recidivism to release its grasp! Our ultimate goal is to distill a teachable format that we can spread throughout the world, in other words, making Pawsitive Change accessible to all! Can you imagine a world where every prison has multiple dog programs producing professional trainers, walkers and pack leaders?! Our program has become the key to freedom for so many of our incarcerated brothers and sisters and can fundamentally change the outcome of hundreds of thousands of lives! Help us get there! We won’t let you down! Our program is just an idea unless we can get it to those whom need it most! America, get ready for Pawsitive Change! @zachskow 📷: @shayanhathaway
“It was a wonderful surprise to have been chosen by the Duke and Duchess of Sussex as one of their 15 Forces for Change charities,” Jon Arnold, CEO of Tiny Tickers, said.
“Already we’ve seen a tremendous increase in awareness of the charity, our work, and the CHD cause globally.”
This is the first month of the awareness-raising initiative — with much more to come over the rest of the year.
What an incredible 24 hours! Thank you to @sussexroyal for following us and supporting our work in august! Amazing! To all our new followers: welcome to the Waves for Change family. We combine the thrill of surfing with mind/body therapy to provide young people living in challenging circumstances the opportunity to practice and master positive behaviours which help them to cope with stress, regulate their behaviour, build healing relationships and make positive life choices 🤙🏽 This opportunity is guided by local youth from similar contexts to our children, who are our epic #surftherapy mentors. We are stoked to have you with us on our journey to provide a child-friendly #mentalhealth service - stay tuned over the coming weeks as we share more about programme! 🎥: @flobison | “That Wave” (Winner of @le_book Creative Award 2015) 🤙🏽