Lady Jay of Ewelme CBE (Sylvia) High Sheriff of Oxfordshire
High Sheriff of Oxfordshire’s Charitable Fund

During her year as High Sheriff of Oxfordshire (2019-20), Sylvia hopes to raise awareness of issues to do with crime and punishment, and of work done by many voluntary, charitable and statutory bodies in our community to prevent criminal behaviour.

The High Sheriff of Oxfordshire’s Charitable Fund is held and managed by Oxfordshire Community Foundation (OCF), a Charitable Incorporated Organisation (number 1151621), to assist current and future High Sheriffs in raising money for charitable purposes. Sylvia Jay was sworn in as High Sheriff of Oxfordshire on 9th April 2019.

Charities that will be supported using donations to the High Sheriff’s fund in 2019-20 include:

  • Aspire Oxford, which helps ex-prisoners find homes and work
  • Fine Cell Work, which teaches needlework skills to prisoners, mostly men
  • Crisis and Arts at The Old Fire Station, which help homeless and other vulnerable people find homes, new skills and jobs, including in the artistic world
  • Think Through Nutrition based in Oxford, which has done research showing that improving diets in prisons also improves prisoners’ behaviour.

During her Shrieval Year Sylvia has hosted several thought-provoking events, and the final one will take place in March 2020, ‘The effects of diet on prisoners’ behaviour, details can be found here.

How to give

Donations to the fund can be made:

High Sheriff Awards 2020

The Annual High Sheriff Awards take place in March, applications for nominations are invited now.

Some 20 such awards are planned for 2019/20 to recognise people in Oxfordshire who have made outstanding contributions to the communities in which they live and work.

The Awards will not normally be made to people who have already been recognised by the award of a National Honour or by bodies such as the Police, the Fire and Rescue Service, the Armed Services and Oxfordshire Charity and Voluntary Action, all of which have their own awards.

Nominees should not be informed that they have been nominated so as not to raise expectations.

The Nomination Process

Please use the nomination form below.  The deadline for nominations is Friday 17th January 2020. Successful nominees will be contacted in early February and you will be informed whether your nomination has been successful. The Awards will be presented at a ceremony in central Oxford on 24th March 2020.

High Sheriff Awards Sylvia Jay – nomination form

Details of the process are in the attached letter.

High Sheriff Awards Sylvia Jay – nomination letter

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Didcot TRAIN Youth Project

Didcot TRAIN works with young people who are at risk of educational failure, crime, child sexual exploitation, alcohol and substance abuse, and other risky behaviours. OCF funded their Young Leaders Programme, which turned the lives of a small cohort of young people around.

The Story Museum

Located in central Oxford, The Story Museum celebrates stories in all forms and explores their enduring power to teach and delight. Working closely with one of our fundholders, the museum has developed several innovative outreach programmes to engage local school children from areas of multiple disadvantage.


Aesop’s ‘Dance to Health’ initiative is a fall-prevention programme for older people, and a fun and social way for older people to participate in exercise, building up strength and mobility while also supporting mental health and wellbeing.

The Porch Steppin’ Stone

The Porch is a day centre that supports homeless and vulnerably housed single adults tackle the multiple problems that are preventing them from moving towards stable housing and sustainable work.