Our CEO, John, and Interim Vice Chair, Terry, with Garfield Weston Foundation Director, Pippa Charles.

The NewLink Wales team is delighted to announce that we’ve received a prestigious Weston Charity Award. The Awards celebrate and support excellent charities working in the fields of Community, Welfare and Youth.

We’re one of just 20 UK-based charities to receive the Award, which recognises our ambition, the difference we make to those in need, and our desire to develop our work further to reach more people. Competition was strong, with 172 entries from small charities from across the North of England, the Midlands and Wales.

Philippa Charles, director of the Garfield Weston Foundation said: ‘The Weston Charity Awards recipients have been selected due to the strength of their ambitions and their openness to external perspectives. As we enter the sixth year of the Awards, our Trustees are excited by the opportunity this presents to strengthen the sector’.

This Award helps us demonstrate that we’ve got serious potential for faciliating long-term societal change, and the ideas and drive to make it happen.

We want to change communities

Following the Award, NewLink Wales will receive support from the appropriately-named Pilotlight programme, which will help us find the next steps to growing our social impact - the wider contribution made to communities by the people who access our programmes.

Pilotlight helps ambitious charities and social enterprises thrive by harnessing the skills of business leaders. The Pilotlight Programme is about coaching charity and social enterprise leaders to develop their business skills, strengthen their organisation and increase its impact. 

‘It’s come at the perfect time,’ says our CEO, John Lowes. ‘We’re at a point where we, and the sector, need to focus on what we do well, how we can do it better, and how we can keep doing it for as long as possible. Community and social change is bigger than just one service, or group of services. We need to find our role within that change, so we can make sure we’re filling it in the best possible way.

‘We often enter people’s lives at a point where there’s real potential for long-term growth and wellbeing, positive change, where they can move away from a ‘service user’ identity towards simply being themselves. To enable and encourage as many people as possible to do that, you need to have a solid, long-term plan.

‘This Award, and support from Pilotlight, puts us in a very strong position as we build that plan.’

Achieving wellbeing, now and in the future

Ultimately, NewLink Wales has always been about changing lives. But changing lives also helps to change entire communities, creating sustainable wellbeing that is led by individuals, rather than by services.

We want to be a catalyst for real social improvement at a deeper level than just service provision. Collaborating with other charities and business leaders means we can continue encouraging those we work with to build new futures - for themselves, and for those around them.

(The Weston Charity Awards are an initiative of the Garfield Weston Foundation and Pilotlight.)