Ben Cairns, IVAR Director, awarded OBE

We are delighted that our Director, Ben Cairns, has been awarded an OBE in the King’s Birthday Honours List, for services to charity and the voluntary sector.

Prior to co-founding IVAR in 2000 with Professor Margaret Harris, Ben worked for 13 years in the field of family homelessness – setting up Shepherds Bush Families Project and campaigning for changes to the benefits system; then in HIV/AIDS, where he played a central role in the ground-breaking 1998 merger of five regional charities into Terrence Higgins Trust.

In response to the urgent need across the voluntary sector for better funding practice, Ben has led IVAR’s research with, for and about funders – most recently through the UK-wide Open and Trusting Grant-making initiative.

Responding to the news, Ben said:

For more than 35 years I have had the privilege of working for and with small charities – the backbone of a healthy civil society.

This honour is a celebration of their vital importance and value. It is also a recognition of the power of action research, the work of my lovely colleagues, and the trust placed us in by IVAR’s core funders.”

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