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Published: 10 October 2017

International awards celebrate social enterprise

An MBA graduate who has dedicated her career to helping vulnerable children around the world and a current Surrey student who champions social enterprise in Uganda have been nominated for international awards.

Sarah De Carvalho MBE, who graduated in 2014, is the founder of It’s a Penalty Campaign which protects children from abuse, exploitation and trafficking at major sporting events. Its work at the 2014 World Cup in Brazil and Rio 2016 Olympics and Paralympics contributed to a significant reduction in crimes against children.

She has been nominated for the AACSB Influential Leaders Challenge which honours alumni from AACSB-accredited business schools and their positive influence on society.

Sarah was moved to set up the campaign when she met 16-year-old Rose in Brazil who had been living on the streets from the age of 11 and has already given birth to two children. She told Sarah that she would take her to where they were exploiting children as young as 9 and 10 years old and begged “Please help us”.

Sarah decided to harness the power of sport to protect children from exploitation and abuse, positioning major sporting events as a platform for positive change. Through her ability to influence and form effective alliances, Sarah and her team built partnerships with governments, sporting governing bodies, law enforcement agencies, high-profile sporting celebrities and other international NGOs in the UK and abroad.  

Dennis Aguma, originally from Uganda, has been nominated for AMBA’s MBA Student of the Year Award which recognises tomorrow’s business leaders.

The opportunity to engage in enterprise activities while at Kingston University inspired Dennis to start the National Association of Student Enterprises (NASE) which champions student enterprise associations in Uganda.

In a country that is plagued by chronic youth employment, NASE has since gone on to engage the Private Sector Foundation of Uganda and the ministries of Education and Gender, Labour and Social Development with a view to embed enterprise skills into Uganda’s education system.

Dennis writes regularly on skills and enterprise matters and has made a number of media appearances on the BBC World Service as well as Uganda’s main print and media outlets.

MBA Programme Director Chris Mahon said: “We are very proud of Sarah and Dennis whose commitment to solving global challenges is inspirational. Surrey’s Connected MBA recognises that the degree needs to be much more than the modules studied and the lessons learnt; it’s about applying those skills in the real world and demonstrating leadership, vision and impact.”