Liam Cunningham, World Vision Ireland Ambassador, receives Human Rights award

liam cunningham

The Irish Council for Civil Liberties (ICCL) presented World Vision Ireland ambassador Liam Cunningham with the inaugural Lifetime Contribution to Human Rights Award at a ceremony in Dublin’s RHA on the 6th March. The award was presented to him by Syrian refugee, Husam Alhraki, whom Liam met while Husam was in Jordan having fled his native country. The Lifetime Contribution to Human Rights Award was presented alongside the well-established ICCL Human Rights On Film Award.

Liam Cunningham’s humanitarian work has included fundraising and advocacy work for migrants and refugees in South Sudan, Syria and Greece. While in Greece, he called on EU leaders to do much more for the people who are stranded there.

“Liam Cunningham has been a long-time passionate supporter for the vulnerable and the voiceless in some of the world’s most dangerous and fragile places.” Niall McLoughlin, CEO of World Vision Ireland, said. “This well-deserved award is a testament to his tireless support of the vulnerable, the displaced, and the marginalised in society. We have seen first-hand Liam’s warmth and genuine concern towards these communities; and his compassion and empathy for children who have experienced trauma, conflict or extreme poverty. Everyone at World Vision Ireland would like to congratulate Liam for his award, and we look forward to continuing our work with him.”

“It’s an honour for me to receive this award from the Irish Council for Civil Liberties, who have been working to make Ireland a freer and better country for almost half a century. And it comes at a really important moment, when Europe is literally allowing refugees to die on our borders.” Liam Cunningham said. “We need to stand up against this, to assert that the Europe and the Ireland we want to live in are places that offer refuge to people who need our help.”

Director of ICCL, Liam Herrick, said, “We presented this award to Liam because of his passionate and outspoken advocacy for migrants and refugees, as well as his fearlessness in pointing out injustice and naming the systems that are to blame for those. In these turbulent times, we need people like Liam who are unafraid to use their platform to help protect our human rights and fragile freedoms.”


World Vision’s Support Inside North West Syria with Irish Aid Support:

From 2017 to date, World Vision Ireland has been implementing Gender Based Violence (GBV) and Child Protection activities in A’zaz North West Syria. Working in IDP (Internally Displaced People) Camps we are providing psychological rehabilitation services and safe spaces for learning and play through the creation of child friendly spaces, provision of life skills training and welfare initiatives for youth and prevention of GBV.

In response to the worsening conflict in Syria last year we provided emergency funding for the running of a Primary Health Care (PHC) facility, ensuring that the delivery of vital medical services and two medical mobile outreach units for two Sub Districts in Idlib. The project also provided GBV and protection training for Internally Displaced People.


World Vision’s work in Azraq Refugee Camp Jordan, supported by Children in Emergencies Funds:

In 2019 World Vision Ireland provided support to the Early Childhood Development Programme in Azraq Refugee Camp. The two kindergartens  taught children (4-6 years) how to read and write in addition to basic numeracy and essential life skills.


The Irish Council for Civil Liberties, the organisation that presented the award to Liam Cunningham, is Ireland’s leading independent human rights body. The ICCL monitors, educates and campaigns to secure all human rights for everyone.