The ceremony was presented by Debra Allcock Tyler, DSC’s Chief Executive, who began with a rousing speech, defending the achievements and integrity of the charity sector and the people who work for and with social change organisations. She said:
“We have the best charitable sector in the whole wide world. Whatever your cause, aim high. You are all engaged in such important work it deserves to be recognised – and to succeed – as together we build a better world”.
She was followed by Peter Wanless, NSPCC’s Chief Executive, who delivered a keynote speech, and then helped present the awards.
Winners of 9th Social Change Awards
The Awards have been held for nine years now. This year the DSC received 150 nominations and nearly 3,000 public votes were cast for the three finalists in each of the categories.
Anthony Lunch, Mondo Foundation’s Chief Executive, was the first winner of the evening with the Influencer Award, for those able to win people over creating positive change. Mondo Foundation has supported educational work in Nepal for more than 10 years, working together with local people.
Great Giving Funders Award
The Great Giving Funders Award was given to Pears Foundation for their ability to work in partnership with their beneficiaries, demonstrating a response to changing needs in the fundraising environment.
Lifetime Achievement Award
Sheila Cunningham has been involved with individuals with learning disabilities since 1966, supporting people to live independent lives in their local communities. In recognition for her work with Way Ahead, she received the Lifetime Achievement Award.
Rising Star Award
The Rising Star Award is for those under 26 who have made a major impact in their organisation or community. Named one of five stand-out community projects by The Guardian, Silent Secret is a social network app for young people that increases emotional wellbeing and connects users to support organisations in times of need. Seun Oshinake defines himself as a social entrepreneur and is Silent Secret co-founder and Chief Executive.
Everyday Impact Award
The Everyday Impact Award has two different categories. The Long Term Enterprises Award was awarded to Bubble Club, which has been challenging the notion that people with disabilities are passive receivers of care. This year, they celebrate their 10th anniversary and have run more than a hundred events in the community.
Tina Jackson and Kath Dowson received the New Enterprises Award for The Link (Redcar). The organisation supports local authorities in addressing the needs of children and young people who have emerging health issues through art, drama and one to one therapy.
All the winners were presented with unique cartoons by Grizelda.
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