11 Oct 2021

Beacons of light shine bright at 20th Anniversary celebration

Outstanding achievements in personal development were celebrated at the 20th anniversary Gala Awards at the Foundation of Light on Friday.


Based at the Beacon of Light in Sunderland, the Foundation works with thousands of people looking to benefit from a range of opportunities to improve their own skills and life chances.


The Harrison Centre for Social Mobility, which is based at the Beacon of Light, was the headline sponsor at the gala awards and is a long-standing partner of the Foundation.


Over 500 guests attended the awards evening on Friday and saw many of the outstanding people who have improved their life chances through the Harrison Centre receive awards and special recognition for their achievements.


The guest of honour was Foundation of Light patron, Her Royal Highness The Countess of Wessex. Guests were also entertained by music from Emeli Sandé, who was born in Sunderland.


Other special guests included Sir Time Rice, Steve Cram and Dame Tanni Grey-Thompson. More than £90,000 was raised during the evening, which will be used by the Foundation to continue its work in the region.


Harrison Centre for Social Mobility founder David Harrison presented the Dedicated Learner Awards to Chloe Kirchner.


David Harrison said: “Many congratulations to Chloe and all of the people who received awards for their achievements. Their dedication and commitment was clear and we were all so impressed by them and their tutors.


“Special recognition must also go to Sir Bob Murray on this 20th anniversary of the Foundation of Light that he set up. Over those years it has benefited thousands of people across Sunderland, South Tyneside and County Durham.


“It was a fantastic evening, I was delighted to attend and present one of the awards. It really does show that the right intervention at the right time can make a big, long-lasting difference.”