Dual role of Children of Courage awards

BBC's Stephanie McGovern and young comedy star Jack Carroll with the 2013 Children of Courage winners
BBC's Stephanie McGovern and young comedy star Jack Carroll with the 2013 Children of Courage winners
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OVER the last 22 years, the St James’s Place Foundation has donated more than £34m to good causes benefiting disadvantaged or disabled youngsters.

From climbing Mount Everest to donating a few pounds from their salaries each month, the majority of the money raised comes from fundraising or donations made by the partners and employees of the St James’s Place Wealth Management company, which has its Yorkshire base in Leeds.

It was to raise money for its charitable arm that four years ago Stephen Mitchell, a senior partner at the company and Foundation representative at the Leeds office, founded the Yorkshire Children of Courage Awards, which take place next month at the Royal Armouries.

Malcolm Cooper-Smith, executive director for St James’s Place and a trustee of the Foundation, said: “We pride ourselves on the fact that somewhere in the region of 85 per cent of money raised comes from our community, with partners and employees committing to give money each month. We’re very confident that we are unique in British business to have that proportion giving on a regular basis.”

Anything raised for the Foundation is matched pound-for-pound by St James’s Place, and the trustees use strict criteria to ensure only the neediest benefit, with each charity visited by a trustee before a grant is approved. Among those who have benefitted are Huddersfield children’s hospice Forget Me Not, who received £75,000 in 2012 to fund a family support team leader for three years.

The Yorkshire Children of Courage awards take place at the Royal Armouries on October 10. Tickets, which include dinner are available on www.yorkshirechildren.co.uk

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