Steve Morgan Foundation 2024 Awards finalists on stage

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A day to inspire, resource and celebrate

The Steve Morgan Foundation 2024 Conference & Awards was held on Monday 22nd April at Carden Park Hotel in Cheshire, where we awarded more than £100,000 to local charities. The event brought together more than 160 people from within the Foundation’s family of charities in a day to inspire, resource and celebrate.

With inspirational keynote speeches, a live interview with Steve Morgan and a series of collaborative workshops, the day culminated with the prestigious awards to celebrate the incredible work of the organisations and people supported by The Steve Morgan Foundation, recognising the valuable contribution they make towards changing lives for good.

Hosted by award-winning journalist, Chris Maguire, the day got underway with a conference designed to offer support, advice and share best practice through a series of workshops covering a range of topics from planning for organisational growth to rediscovering the value of community. The workshops were interspersed with speeches from inspiring guest speakers including Matt Parish, CEO of Liverpool FC Foundation, Andy Cook, Chief Executive of Centre of Social Justice and professional yachtsman and three times World Record holder, Jack Trigger.

Q&A with Steve Morgan on stage at SMF conference and awards 2024

Liam Eaglestone, CEO of The Steve Morgan Foundation, said:

“The Steve Morgan Foundation 2024 Conference and Awards not only honours and celebrates the fantastic achievements of the organisations and people within our family of charities, but also provides an opportunity to recognise and share some wonderful best practice in our region as well as learn from and inspire one another. This year we are continuing that learning with follow-on communities, kindly hosted by the leaders of our Associate Charities, promoting peer-led discussion and reflection to support each other in the work we are doing.”

The day ended on a celebratory note with the Awards presentations. This year, prize money was awarded for outstanding service delivery and commitment across eight award categories. The winning charity of each award received £10,000 with a further £2,000 awarded to the remaining two category finalists. The winner of a discretionary award, chosen by Steve himself, was also unveiled during the awards presentations.

Commenting on the award entries, our Founder and Chairman, Steve Morgan, said:

“It was fantastic to read about all the amazing work that is being done for our communities within our family of charities and every entry we received was worthy of recognition. The standard of entries to this year’s awards has been extremely high and it was certainly no easy task to select the finalists and winners from over a hundred entries.”

Unlike other awards, the ethos behind our event is to bring charities together to foster collaboration rather than competition and to recognise and celebrate all of their incredible achievements in making a positive difference to people’s lives.

Having undergone intense scrutiny by the judging panel consisting of the Trustees of the Foundation, Steve and Sally Morgan, Vincent Fairclough, Rhiannon Walker OBE, Ashley Lewis, Jane Harris and Brian Clark, all of whom have first-hand knowledge of the charities having worked closely with them, three finalists were agreed on for each of the categories.

The winners of the Steve Morgan Foundation 2024 Awards

SMF 2024 Award winners on stage

Charity Leader of the Year was awarded to Kathy Wright who is Centre Head at Maggie’s Wirral. Maggie’s delivers support, help and advice for families who are affected by cancer. The centre offers a warm, safe environment for people to talk, connect and seek refuge. Kathy is a true ambassador for Maggie’s, embodying their values with kindness, with integrity, with each other and with courage in every aspect of her work. Her extraordinary leadership, compassionate nature, and exceptional commitment to Maggie’s Wirral have undoubtedly maximised the impact Maggie’s Wirral has been able to make in recent years. Kathy leads by example, never more apparent than when she took part in last year’s triathlon. 

Volunteer of the Year was awarded to Ben Meadows of Cerebral Palsy United Football Club. Ben began to volunteer at the age of fourteen in the Club’s ‘Our Futures’ program, remaining behind after his own training session, to work with and support the sessions of his younger club mates. He is now 23 and is a lead coach at the Liverpool centre. Over the last 18 months Ben has gone above and beyond his coaching duties and has become a mentor to ten student physiotherapists from LJM university.

Young Volunteer of the Year was scooped up by Rebecca Clark of Pure Insight. Rebecca is a member of the Experts by Experience group and has helped to design and deliver ‘through our eyes’ training to new volunteers, team members and other professionals and decision makers supporting care leavers. Rebecca also regularly sits on interview panels helping to recruit the right team and volunteers.   

Collecting Best Small/Medium Charity or Social Enterprise (t/o less than £1m) was Breckfield & North Everton Neighbourhood Council. Breckfield and North Everton Neighbouring Council has a small team of dedicated staff and community volunteers and provides its residents in Everton and Anfield with information, advice, support, training, community events and access to resources.  

Best Large Charity or Social Enterprise (t/o more than £1m) went to End Furniture Poverty. End Furniture Poverty was created nine years ago to raise awareness of furniture poverty and to work with partners to develop scaled solutions. End Furniture Poverty supports social landlords to create furniture schemes for tenants and with the support of the Steve Morgan Foundation recently launched Time for Bed, a fundraising appeal giving away free beds to children across Merseyside. 

Scooping the Disruptor for Good award was Everton in the Community. Everton in the Community (EitC) is the charitable arm of Everton Football Club and is one of the UK’s top sporting charities. EitC is considered to be one of the Premier League’s leading community schemes due to the quality and reach of its programmes which seek to transform lives and create positive change. 

Partnership of the Year award was picked up by Right to Succeed. Right to Succeed supports communities in areas of high deprivation, aiming to give children and young people the best start in life by bringing together residents, professionals and decision-makers to co-design long-term, sustainable programmes that are bespoke to the needs of the local community. They received this award for the delivery of the Cradle to Career programme in partnership with over 100 organisations.

And finally, taking the accolade of the discretionary Outstanding Contribution award was the Foundation’s own Jane Harris. Jane has been the driving force behind the Foundation for a number of years and is now a Trustee. Steve Morgan personally selected Jane as the winner due to her unwavering commitment, not only to the Steve Morgan Foundation, but also to the charities and organisations we support. 

Steve added:

“This award was created to recognise the individual that I felt had gone the extra mile in the contribution they make towards their charity. It was a difficult decision as there were several worthy winners, but I was delighted to present the award to Jane, who has been instrumental to the development of the Steve Morgan Foundation over the last 17 years. As well as her outstanding contribution while working for the Foundation, Jane remains passionately involved as a Trustee in supporting our charities and helping us deliver philanthropy at its best.”

View the full list of finalists here.

2024 Conference and Awards image gallery

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