HelpAge International Wins 2012 Conrad N. Hilton Humanitarian Prize
International jury selects only global NGO with singular focus on improving the lives of the world's older people
WASHINGTON, DC - March 8, 2012 - HelpAge International, the only global organization with a singular focus on providing assistance to and advocating for disadvantaged older people, has been selected to receive the 2012 Conrad N. Hilton Humanitarian Prize.The Conrad N. Hilton Foundation presents the annual award, the world's largest humanitarian prize, to an organization that is doing extraordinary work to alleviate human suffering. The Prize will be presented at the Global Philanthropy Forum on April 16th in Washington, D.C.
"The world is aging. By 2015, over 890 million people will be over 60; nearly three times the total population of the United States of America. Nearly 190 million older people live in poverty with more than 100 million living on less than $1 a day," said Steven M. Hilton, CEO and president of the Conrad N. Hilton Foundation. "As the world prepares for this monumental demographic shift, HelpAge is showing us that it is important to recognize and support older people so they can continue to be contributing and productive members of society."
"Receiving the Hilton Prize is a great honor", added Marilyn F. Grist, Executive Director of HelpAge International's US Affiliate, "It is especially meaningful to draw the world's attention to the historic transformation being brought about by global aging and the plight of millions of older people who face overwhelming financial, social and health hurdles every day. At HelpAge, we believe the whole world benefits when we tap the substantial wisdom and talents of older people and enable them to lead dignified, active, healthy and secure lives."
Both an advocacy and development organization, in 2002 HelpAge was instrumental in shaping the United Nations Madrid International Plan of Action on Aging, adopted by 57 countries who pledged to include aging in all social and economic development policies. Since then, the HelpAge global network of older people and its Affiliated organizations have continued to press for improvement in government policies supporting the aged.
HelpAge believes a critical component is engagement of older people themselves in efforts to claim their rights to health care, social services and economic and physical security. It has shown that older people are their own best advocates and make valuable contributions to society as caregivers, advisors, mentors, mediators and breadwinners.
HelpAge was formed in 1983 by organizations across the United Kingdom, Canada, Colombia, Kenya and India that had similar missions to support older people. Today HelpAge International encompasses 94 HelpAge Affiliates in 70 countries and more than 3,000 independent partner groups and older people's organizations. The organization has trained 25,000 professionals and 16,000 community members - including older people themselves - to provide health care, legal advice and financial support for older people.
For further information, contact Kim Karris at email@example.com or 202-714-1119.
@hiltonprize #HiltonPrize, @helpage
HelpAge USA, an affiliate of HelpAge International, is part of a global network of organizations helping older people claim their rights, challenge discrimination and overcome poverty, so that they can lead dignified, secure, active and healthy lives. For more information, please visit: www.helpageusa.org
About the Conrad N. Hilton Humanitarian Prize
The Hilton Prize jury currently includes: Princess Salimah Aga Khan, international ambassador for SOS Kinderdorf International; Catherine A. Bertini, professor of public administration, Syracuse University, and former executive director of the United Nations World Food Programme; Gro Harlem Brundtland, MPH, former director-general of the World Health Organization and former prime minister of Norway; Eric M. Hilton, director, Conrad N. Hilton Foundation, and son of the late Conrad Hilton; James R. Galbraith, director, Conrad N. Hilton Foundation; Strive Masiyiwa, African humanitarian, business leader and cell phone pioneer, founder and executive chairman of Econet Wireless; and Professor Amartya Sen, Nobel Prize Laureate in economics and Lamont University professor at Harvard University.
The Hilton Prize Laureates are recognized leaders in the humanitarian world and include: Handicap International (France), 2011; Aravind Eye Care System (India) 2010; PATH (Washington), 2009; BRAC (Bangladesh), 2008; Tostan (Senegal), 2007; Women for Women International (Washington, DC), 2006; Partners In Health (Massachusetts), 2005; Heifer International (Arkansas), 2004; International Rehabilitation Center for Torture Victims (Denmark), 2003; SOS Children's Villages (Austria), 2002; St. Christopher's Hospice (United Kingdom), 2001; Casa Alianza (Costa Rica), 2000; African Medical and Research Foundation (Kenya), 1999; Doctors Without Borders (France), 1998; International Rescue Committee (New York), 1997; and Operation Smile (Virginia), 1996.
About Conrad N. Hilton Foundation
The Conrad N. Hilton Foundation was created in 1944 by international business pioneer Conrad N. Hilton, who founded Hilton Hotels and left his fortune to help the world's disadvantaged and vulnerable people. The Foundation currently conducts strategic initiatives in five priority areas: providing safe water, ending chronic homelessness, preventing substance abuse, caring for vulnerable children, and extending Conrad Hilton's support for the work of Catholic Sisters. Following selection by an independent international jury, the Foundation annually awards the $1.5 million Conrad N. Hilton Humanitarian Prize to a nonprofit organization doing extraordinary work to alleviate human suffering. From its inception, the Foundation has awarded more than $1 billion in grants and in 2011 distributed $82 million to organizations in the U.S. and throughout the world. The Foundation's current assets are approximately $2 billion. For more information, please visit www.hiltonfoundation.org.