Scottish Children’s Charity, Aberlour was thrilled to have been awarded the prestigious UK Large Charity of the Year Award at the Third Sector Awards on Friday afternoon at the Royal Lancaster Hotel in London.

The award was made to the charity or voluntary sector organisation that has had a truly exceptional year and whose recent achievements have attracted the admiration of the sector.

2022/23 was indeed an exceptional year for Aberlour as it realised its ‘Being Brave’ Strategy. The cost-of-living emergency demanded Brave responses for children, young people and families. Aberlour’s Board, Staff and volunteers stepped up and were:

  • Brave in their Emergency Response – for the first-time using TV to drive their most successful winter appeal, raising nine times their target donation income. Using their Urgent Assistance Fund to distribute 100% of donations direct to 1009 families as cash grants for essentials, such as heating and food.
  • Brave in their Recovery and Early Intervention Support – opening new services of national significance, including the first Scottish national Mother and Child Substance Use Recovery House of its kind.
  • Brave in Calling Out Government – using their school meal debt research to call for its removal from families’ shoulders, resulting in 10 Scottish Local Authorities writing off the debt.
  • Brave in Strengthening the Charity – growing income by 19%, improving staff pay and conditions, achieving Investors in Diversity.

A key validation of their success was Aberlour’s Chief Executive, SallyAnn Kelly receiving an OBE for services to children and families.

Chair of Aberlour David Robb said: “We are absolutely thrilled to receive this award and for our work to be recognised by so many eminent judges and sector leaders. The award is testament to the bravery of everyone at Aberlour who have worked so hard and gone the extra mile to help more children, young people and families in Scotland.”

Chief Executive, SallyAnn Kelly OBE said: “On behalf of everyone at Aberlour I am over the moon that we have won this prestigious award and would like to thank everyone who contributed and help make this happen.  We were up against some strong competition from other fantastic well respected and deserving organisations and we are so proud to receive this award”.

Other charities shortlisted for this award include Great Ormond Street Hospital Children’s Charity, Blood Cancer UK, Locality and Onside.