Magic Breakfast founder Carmel McConnell made MBE

carmel mcconnell
Image caption Carmel McConnell's charity provides breakfast for 23,500 schoolchildren a day

The founder of a project which provides a free, healthy meal for 23,500 schoolchildren a day has been made an MBE in the New Year Honours List.

Carmel McConnell's Magic Breakfast charity offers porridge, bagels, cereal and orange juice to pupils.

The project began in Hackney when teachers Ms McConnell interviewed for a book told her they brought in food for their pupils to help them concentrate.

She said the award was a "very genuine surprise".

She added it "should have gone to the members of my team".

Ms McConnell said having free school lunches for pupils helped their concentration in the afternoons.

However, she said often the most important lessons were taught in the morning and that was why her organisation focused on providing breakfasts at a cost to the charity of 22p each.

Also awarded was Professor Til Wykes, vice-dean at King's College London, who becomes a dame for services to clinical psychology.

Image copyright David Tett
Image caption Professor Til Wykes has praised EastEnders for having "broken the boundaries of mental health stigma"

King's College London described the Brixton resident as "an international leader in understanding and advancing the rehabilitation and recovery for people with severe mental illness".

Helen Marriage, the artistic director of the production company Artichoke, has been made an MBE.

She is responsible for the London Lumiere festival, which will light up buildings in the West End and King's Cross on four nights in January.

Image copyright Artichoke
Image caption Helen Marriage 's Artichoke production company was involved in the 2012 Olympics
Image caption Tim Sigsworth is chief executive of the Albert Kennedy Trust, which helps young LGBT people in London, Manchester and Newcastle

The chief executive of the Albert Kennedy Trust (AKT), Tim Sigsworth, which supports homeless young LGBT people, is also appointed MBE.

AKT runs Purple Door London, a safe house at a secret location in the capital.

About 20% of homeless people identify as LGBT and many have been rejected by their families after coming out.

Other award recipients include Patrice Thomas MBE who has looked after 155 children in Brent in her 31 years as a foster carer and Rekha Mehr MBE, who founded Pistachio Rose, an Indian sweet company.

Image copyright Rekha Mehr
Image caption Rekha Mehr helps start-ups find the advice and support they need

Another new MBE is Kilburn resident Roy Croasdaile, who has played a leading role in breaking down barriers between the police, public authorities and young people trapped in a violent cycle of "reprisal issues".

He became involved in community activism in 2003, when he and hundreds of others who despaired of violence in Brent attended a public meeting.

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