Skip to the main content

Oliver Hare Altruism Award 2021

What is the Oliver Hare Altruism Award?

Do you know somebody who’s always going above and beyond to help others?  Maybe you know someone who’s done something really extraordinary this year to make a difference in the community?  Or maybe it’s that one person who stands out for their unwavering selfless nature, but hasn’t yet received the recognition they truly deserve?  Whatever the case, now is your chance to celebrate them and what they’ve achieved - let them know that their efforts have certainly not gone unnoticed! If there’s ever a time for recognising remarkable individuals, it’s now; and if there’s ever a cause for celebrating a wonderful volunteer, we want to celebrate them too!

How, you wonder? With our Oliver Hare Altruism Award, which will be awarded at the Annual Volunteering Awards Ceremony, coming up very soon.

This year will be the fourth year that the Award has been presented, and it’s becoming a well-established highlight of our Awards Ceremony.  The Award was created by a charity very dear to the heart of the UCL community, Olly’s Future, which was set-up in memory of former UCL student and history graduate Oliver Hare. The charity aims to continue Olly’s legacy of kindness and compassion, a memory which inspired all who knew him, and still inspires us to this day to help those around us. In recognising the efforts of individual students who have either got involved in formal volunteering roles, or who have offered informal support for others in the community, the Award honours the continuing initiative, empathy and altruism of an incredible UCL body of students, those who seek to positively impact the world around them.  It epitomises the kind of volunteers that we are proud to represent and encourages further positive change-makers to aspire to make a difference. 

We know we’ve said it before, but more so than ever, 2021 really is THE year to celebrate acts of altruism.  Not only are they more needed than ever before, but we also know that there are more exceptional examples of altruism than ever before, because we’ve really stepped up to the call for kindness in the world and the undeniable need for hope on the horizon. It’s people like our Altruism Award winners who are putting that hope out there into the world, and bringing brighter smiles and faith in humanity to those who need it most.  Be it the UCL community, or the wider world community, what’s been clear this year is that, amid all the damage, drama and devastation, there are still little pockets of joy that can be found in the people that are still willing to put the interests of others above their own.  It would be all too easy to be disheartened, even angry, at the world.  But sacrifice and selflessness has been the name of the game for many, and that’s exactly why we need to celebrate and uplift them! 

What does an Altruism Award winner look like?

Need some inspiration for the kind of person we’re talking about?  Check out last year’s winner, Aliza Ayaz, whose acts of altruism earned her the deserved recognition of her nominator. It started with her just wanting to do something, be it small or big, to help the COVID-19 response, but the results were more than a little something: Aliza delivered close to 5000 meals to hospitals and other front-line workers, and, together with her friends, facilitated distance-learning laptops and iPads for students who needed them. It is a drive to think about others that inspire her to be involved in her community wherever she can be, and she says that there are ways to make altruistic decisions in everything we do - and she’s not wrong!  You can read more about Aliza and her amazing story here.

Last year’s winner of the Altruism Award, Aliza Ayaz

Get nominating!

If somebody sprang to mind while reading Aliza’s story, nominate them for the Oliver Hare Altruism Award now!  There really is no reason not to!  Nominations are open until Monday 17 May. The winner will receive £100. 

If Aliza’s story, or Oliver’s legacy, struck a chord with you, and inspired you to want to carry out your own acts of altruism, there’s no time like the present.  We have plenty of opportunities on our volunteering directory, which are both: virtual, so you can volunteer from anywhere in the world; and, as lockdown measures ease, will be increasingly in-person too.  The directory is always being updated, so keep checking back for something that piques your interest.  

Written by Rebecca Stewart, Administrative Assistant