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Beacon Prize 2004 winners announced

Sir Bob Geldof is one of the winners of the 2004 Beacon Prize, established to recognise and showcase individuals who have made exceptional contributions to charitable or social causes.

The Beacon Prize winners were announced at a debate at the Royal Society of Arts on the subject of the impact of the Asian tsunami disaster on charitable giving in the UK.

The discussion was chaired by Martyn Lewis who announced the prize winners in the various categories, who were:

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Businessman John Studzinski won the Special Beacon Prize for Most Generous Businessman for his extensive work in helping people from deprived walks of life. He set up the Genesis Foundation (formerly the John Studzinski Foundation) in 1996 which helps and supports young artists, playwrights and musicians by providing them with practical and financial support in the earliest stages of their careers. He is also Chairman of Business Action on Homelessness, which works to change the perceptions companies have of homelessness and helps homeless people back into employment.

Dr Frederick Mulder won the Judges’ Special Beacon Prize for his enormous generosity and innovative initiatives that have resulted in millions of pounds being given to good causes. Fred used much of his income as an art dealer for the good of others, giving to charity in a range of unusual ways and persuading other rich individuals to give their money to charity and to enjoy it. He has helped to found two institutions, The Network for Social Change and The Funding Network, both of which encourage individuals to become involved with social and charitable causes.

Since the early 1980’s Fred has looked for inventive ways to use his money. After Greenpeace’s ship, the Rainbow Warrior, was sunk in Auckland Harbour Fred suggested that, as they were constantly on the news, they use advertising as a means of attracting new members. He took the risk of underwriting £10,000 for an advertising campaign which he insisted be placed on the front pages of newspapers alongside news about Greenpeace.

All winners are invited to join the Beacon Fellowship, a group which meets once or twice a year to bring its skills to bear on issues of relevance to the future of the voluntary sector. One overall winner receives £20,000 to give to the charitable cause(s) of their choice.

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