CNN  — 

Star footballer turned political activist Marcus Rashford has been honored by Queen Elizabeth II in recognition of his campaign to feed vulnerable children during the coronavirus crisis.

The Manchester United and England striker receives an MBE (Member of the British Empire) in the birthday honors list which was postponed from June to reward key workers and others for their efforts during the Covid-19 pandemic.

Rashford, 22, took the fight to the UK government by campaigning for 1.3 million children to claim free school meal vouchers in England’s summer holidays.

The government was originally set to end the scheme, which only runs during the school term, but after crafting a powerful open letter to lawmakers, backed by his use of social media with 2.8 million followers on Twitter, Rashford forced a U-turn.

Rashford, the youngest of five children, said he was “honoured and humbled” by the award, but has vowed to continue his fight to end child poverty with a personal appeal to UK Prime Minister Boris Johnson to extend support.