The birth of his daughter has spurred one of New Zealand's newest knights to speed another of his life-saving inventions to the developing world.
Sir Ray Avery, 63, was named New Zealander of the Year in February and has been knighted in the New Year's Honours list.
Sir Ray, an Auckland scientist, entrepreneur and inventor whose innovations have benefited millions in the developing world, has recently finished developing a low-cost "Liferaft Incubator" which will use patented technology to reduce the death rate of premature babies affected by bacterial infections.
The birth of his second daughter Anastasia six days ago made Sir Ray realise the importance of the invention and made him focus on getting it rolled out sooner, he said.
His own beginnings in orphanages and on the streets made a sharp contrast with the honour he had achieved.
"Fifty years ago I was sleeping rough under a bridge in the East End of London and now I'm a knight. It's beyond my wildest aspirations."
As a homeless 13-year-old, Sir Ray spent hours in libraries for warmth and it was there that he developed his love of knowledge and science.
The knighthood was also an acceptance by his adopted country, he said. "I felt like a Kiwi who was born in the wrong country. To be recognised is personally very important."
Sir Ray said the gong was testament to all the people who had worked on his projects.
As chief executive of independent development agency and charity Medicine Mondiale, Sir Ray has created low-cost solutions to combat poverty and health problems in the world's most vulnerable and neglected societies.