A woman whose daughter was murdered in the 7/7 bombings today reiterated her promise to “turn things round and do whatever we can to redress the negative.”
Mavis Hyman, 87, has devoted herself since the tragedy to charitable projects set up in memory of her 31-year-old daughter, Miriam, who was killed in the Tavistock Square bus explosion in 2005.
Named as this year’s recipient of Jewish Care’s Topland Business Luncheon Award, Mrs Hyman, who established the Miriam Hyman Memorial Trust, described the honour as “very precious and deeply moving”.
Speaking of her daughter, she said: “Miriam was the greatest gift that we had and we lost her in an act of senseless brutality.
“This was hard, so the only way we could really cope with it was to try and turn things round.”
Alongside her husband, John, daughter Esther and Miriam’s friends, she set up the Miriam Hyman Children’s Eye Care Centre in Orissa, India, close to where Mrs Hyman was born.
The centre helps treat children who need eye care services, including those unable to pay.
Alongside this, the charity has also developed a curriculum-based resource for secondary schools students, in an effort to promote tolerance and prevent extremism.
Speaking to a 700-strong audience, Mrs Hyman said: “If you want to make a man, then you really need to be able to nurture this maturity and the place to start is the family and then the school.
“We hope to find a pathway to encourage children to act rationally in the face of adversity and use Miriam’s story as a guide to how others have done it. The young people are finding this very inspirational and we are feeling encouraged.”
She added: “If we can just appreciate each other’s culture, instead of being afraid of it and putting up barriers, then we have hope of a more cohesive society.”
The event, held at Grosvenor House Hotel, in Park Lane, on Wednesday, helped raise £250,000 for Jewish Care’s Helpline and community support services.
Following the award presentation James Harding, director of BBC News, interviewed Laura Kuenssberg, BBC political editor and Newsnight presenter about her life in the Commons, her take on Brexit and the recent slew of MP sexual harassment allegations.
Of the latter, she described Westminster as “a strange place, full of people with ambition and loyalty and people who care about the party and about their careers.”
She said: “It’s clear to me that young staff – women and men -have had to put up with harassment in all different ways.
“It’s been very difficult to get a handle on the actual scale of what’s going on, because people haven’t wanted to come forward.
“I think the biggest change we are seeing is a generational thing, of what people think was once appropriate and what is appropriate now.”