The Conrad N. Hilton Foundation Announces an Increase to the Hilton Humanitarian Prize and a Grant to the Hilton Prize Coalition
(Los Angeles) Sept. 15, 2015 – The Conrad N. Hilton Foundation, one of the world’s leading Foundations working to improve the lives of disadvantaged and vulnerable people throughout the world, announced a $2 million commitment to launch the next groundbreaking force in the humanitarian sector – The Hilton Prize Coalition. This new grant will formalize the unique coalition comprised of many of the first 19 Hilton Humanitarian Prize-winning organizations and kick-start the implementation of two new signature initiatives: the Hilton Prize Laureates Fellowship Program, designed to inspire a new generation of humanitarian leaders, and the Disaster Resiliency and Response Program, created to help Prize laureates combine forces to leverage their work partnerships, and to improve services and programs in the field.
In addition, the Foundation announced that the monetary award for the Hilton Humanitarian Prize, the world’s largest humanitarian prize for nonprofits, is being increased from $1.5 million to $2 million to commemorate its 20th Hilton Humanitarian Prize laureate, which will be announced in New York City on Oct. 14.
“For 20 years, the Conrad N. Hilton Humanitarian Prize has proudly helped fuel the success of some of the world’s most influential nonprofit organizations in their efforts to alleviate human suffering,” said Conrad N. Hilton Chairman, President and CEO Steven M. Hilton. “The Foundation’s investment to formalize the Hilton Prize Coalition furthers our support for such important humanitarian work by engaging the next generation of humanitarian leaders, and developing an innovative model to respond to disasters.”
Each year, the Foundation reviews hundreds of nominations for notable nonprofit organizations from across the globe, and an independent, international panel of distinguished jurors makes the final selection after a rigorous vetting process. Nominations for the 2016 Hilton Humanitarian Prize will be accepted beginning on Sept. 28 and should be submitted though the Conrad N. Hilton Foundation website before Oct. 31.
“What’s perhaps most unique and important about the Hilton Humanitarian Prize is the organic nature in which many of these organizations are now collaborating,” said Conrad N. Hilton Foundation Vice President and Prize Director Judy Miller. “The Hilton Humanitarian Prize Laureates met the leaders of the other Laureates through the Prize and recognized they had a unique opportunity to join forces in the field and demonstrate that greater leverage and efficiency was possible if they became a collective force where they had common goals. Through informal collaborations, they have found they can better utilize their resources and maximize the impact of their work. Now, they are formalizing their joint efforts by establishing the Hilton Prize Coalition. This coalition will promote the sharing of ideas and will help identify opportunities for partnership that further the missions of our Laureates.”
The new Hilton Prize Coalition aims to establish: a common agenda whereby all participants share best practices in their respective fields; a list of common indicators used for learning and improvement; continuous, frequent and open communication; and backbone support with independent, funded staff dedicated to supporting and advancing the initiative.
The Hilton Prize Laureates Fellowship Program seeks to address the lack of professional mentorship and real-world training for young people that is often required as work experience, but that most students do not have when they enter the nonprofit sector. The program will provide a select group of graduate and undergraduate Fellows with a unique experience to learn from top-level nonprofit leaders and organizations and participate through both headquarters and fieldwork. With the goal of growing the program to 25 fellows annually, the Hilton Prize Coalition plans to expand and strengthen a global network of future humanitarian leaders. Following a pilot of this program in 2014, Global Impact, which acts as the Secretariat for the group, has secured partnerships with several leading universities to participate in the program.
The Disaster Resiliency and Response Program is a three-year pilot program aimed at developing an innovative, collaborative model that delivers timely and effective systems and processes, which should be in place before and after a disaster. The unique structure of this program not only helps the Laureates understand, adapt and respond to disaster situations immediately, but also provokes an analysis about how communities can become more resilient in the long-term wake of such disasters. Approximately 11 Laureate organizations have currently expressed interest in this program, and a Working Group has been formed to lead design and implementation efforts.
“Through these projects and their ongoing collaboration together, the Laureates, working in more than 150 countries, seek to leverage resources and expertise, and establish best practices and standards that can be shared with the global NGO and donor communities,” Miller said. “Given today’s global challenges, often many issues are simply too large or complex for any single organization to handle, but by teaming up, the Laureates are now able to work on larger issues or in countries that were before out of their scope of involvement. We are proud to support these efforts and believe these unique partnerships will make a strong contribution to the humanitarian field.”
About the 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 six priority areas: providing safe water, ending chronic homelessness, preventing substance use, helping children affected by HIV and AIDS, supporting transition-age youth in foster care, and extending Conrad Hilton’s support for the work of Catholic Sisters. In addition, following selection by an independent international jury, the Foundation annually awards the $2 million Conrad N. Hilton Humanitarian Prize to a nonprofit organization doing extraordinary work to reduce human suffering. From its inception, the Foundation has awarded more than $1 billion in grants, distributing $100 million in the U.S. and around the world in 2014. The Foundation’s current assets are approximately $2.5 billion. For more information, please visit www.hiltonfoundation.org.