The two-yearly Beacon Awards celebrate and promote excellence in philanthropy. But Beacon is more than an awards ceremony. It is a fellowship network of inspirational and diverse philanthropists, with whom we can connect and from whom we can learn.
Managed by OCF’s umbrella body UK Community Foundations, Beacon is looking for people who are using their resources to benefit society. The amount of money they give is not, on its own, important; rather, Beacon seeks people whose work will inspire others, and whose achievements and lessons learned will help other philanthropists as they think about and plan their approaches to changing the world.
For 2017, the Beacon Awards will be built around the idea of ‘powering philanthropy’, intended to evoke a sense of strength, energy and modernisation. Indeed, in partnership with community foundations, Beacon aspires to powering the philanthropy of the future. This idea also reminds us of the power of philanthropy: when done well, community foundations have seen what a transformational difference strategic and impactful philanthropy can really make.
Nominations for Beacon 2017 open on Wednesday 19th October 2016. A full information pack with details of categories, criteria, eligibility and FAQs can be found here. All nominations should be submitted via the online nominations form on the Beacon website. Beacon is open for nominations up until 5pm on 5th December 2016.
OCF donors David and Claudia Harding received a Beacon Award in 2015, recognising their patronage of science and research projects, and their work with Oxfordshire Community Foundation, which allows them to give to a variety of grassroots community projects happening close to their home in Oxfordshire. The 2017 awards include three new categories, most notably the Beacon Award for Local Community Philanthropy, which is especially suitable for nominees whose giving is place-specific or has had a substantial impact on community wellbeing in a particular region.
Fabian French, Chief Executive of UK Community Foundations, comments: “Community foundations play an integral role in shaping the Beacon Awards. As a network we can strive to ensure the process recognises the inspirational philanthropy that is taking in place in all corners of the UK. We are certain that every community foundation will be familiar with philanthropists in their area who are achieving significant impact either locally, nationally or perhaps even globally – and who ultimately deserve to be honoured with a Beacon Award.”
If you would like to suggest someone to OCF who should be nominated for a Beacon Award, please contact us.