Ministry of Stories and first-time cultural philanthropists, John Gillman and Mary Winch have won this year’s Achates Philanthropy Prize Individual Philanthropy Award, while With One Voice (Streetwise Opera) and Laing O’Rourke have won the Corporate Award.
John and Mary were nominated by Ministry of Stories for donating an unrestricted gift of £1,000 – their first donation to a cultural organisation – to support the charity’s mission in championing the ability of every child to be a writer, and its specific work to reach young people from East London who face barriers and/or have limited opportunity to develop a love of writing within mainstream education.
The couple are regular theatre and arts attenders but viewed culture as separate to their charitable giving. The Achates Philanthropy Prize judging panel agreed that their story reflected a key issue facing arts organisations across the UK: that regular charitable donors often do not realise that most arts organisation are charities too. The judges praised Ministry of Stories for successfully articulating the charitable aims of its work, and role in society, to engage and inspire new supporters.
They received a sculpture by British artist, Peter Brooke-Ball MRBS, which they will be custodians of for one year. Ministry of Stories received a £5,000 donation from the Achates Philanthropy Foundation which will be allocated towards its expanded writing clubs programme with local schools.
Kirsty Telford, Deputy Director, Ministry of Stories, said:
“The team is over the moon that John and Mary have won this award. We were delighted to welcome them into our family of supporters and they have already offered so many ideas and contacts that could help us raise our profile in the local area and in the City of London.
“Our charity was founded on the ambition and hard graft of our community and funded through the generosity of a group of donors and funders who really understood what we were trying to achieve in those early days. Without their belief and investment in our vision, we wouldn’t have been able to grow, develop and champion the writer in every child.”
With One Voice, the international arts and homelessness movement founded by Streetwise Opera, first approached Laing O’Rourke to become a sponsor of the first-ever International Arts and Homelessness Summit & Festival across Greater Manchester from 12-18 November. The construction company agreed to contribute £5,000 cash and £5,000 in-kind to the creation of a public mural, as one of the Festival’s flagship activities, as well as consultancy and project management expertise.
The judges praised the long-term impact of this new partnership, which has resulted in the implementation of a new strategic approach by Laing O’Rourke to tackle the issues surrounding homelessness in the areas in which it works. Once developed, the scheme will be piloted in Greater Manchester, ahead of national rollout.
Laing O’Rourke also received a sculpture by Brooke-Ball, which they will be custodians of for a year. With One Voice received a £5,000 donation from the Achates Philanthropy Foundation, which will be allocated towards the Summit & Festival legacy, including developing a Cultural Partnerships Framework in Manchester, linking arts organisations to homelessness organisations.
The shortlist had been announced in September.
Main image: The Individual Philanthropy Award winners & judges (left-right): Caroline McCormick, founder of the Achates Philanthropy Prize; Michael Nabarro, Prize sponsor, Spektrix; Marcus Davey, Chief Executive and Artistic Director of the Roundhouse and Prize judge; Claire and Ray Gard, 2017’s Individual Award winners; John Gillman and Mary Winch (2018 Individual Award winners) with Kirsty Telford from Ministry of Stories; Bill Swainson, Chair of the judging panel and Prize Trustee; Nigel and Angelica Farnall (2016 Prize winners); Cerian Eiles, judge; Hannah Keville, Ministry of Stories. Photo by James Allan
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