Chaired by Amartya K Sen, winner of the Nobel Prize for Economics in 1998, the jury comprised 10 international experts from across academia, art, culture, business and associations.
The 2009 “Grand Prix” was awarded to Odon Vallet recognising the work of his foundation, Fondation Vallet, which gives a large number of study grants each year to outstanding students from deprived backgrounds. The Fondation Vallet is one of France’s most generous private student sponsorship organisations. Every year since 1999, Odon Vallet has given 300 grants of €3,600 to students enrolling to applied arts schools (including École Boulle, Arts Décoratifs, the École Dupérré, the Gobelins, the Femis) in addition to those enrolling in preparatory courses for the prestigious “grandes écoles”. This has been a very worthwhile cause with 88% of the students graduating successfully in previous years.
Operating under the “Fondation de France” name, Vallet has also worked overseas, awarding nearly 2000 grants to Vietnamese students and to 800 students from Benin.The jury’s “Special Prize” was won by Albina du Boisrouvray for her work with the Association François-Xavier Bagnoud (FXB). Established in 1989, this organization is dedicated to combating poverty and AIDS and helping orphaned children affected by the AIDS pandemic.
Operating in 18 countries, the association has more than 450 employees and some 1400 volunteers. It runs over 100 programmes, including 50 FXB Villages (self-sustaining community development programs).
At the award ceremony, François Debiesse, CEO of BNP Paribas Wealth Management, said: “Our bank, as strong as it is, is always conscious of the wider world. By promoting dialogue between the business world and its surroundings, the BNP Paribas Philanthropy Awards are a channel to demonstrate our concern for the world around us. It is also a way of translating the bank’s values of boldness and creativity into a different environment”.
About BNP Paribas
BNP Paribas (www.bnpparibas.com) is the Eurozone’s leading bank in terms of deposits and one of the 10 most important banks in the world in terms of net banking income, equity capital and market value. Furthermore, it is one of the six strongest banks in the world according to Standard & Poor’s. With a presence in 85 countries and more than 205,000 employees, 165,200 of which in Europe, BNP Paribas is a global-scale European leader in financial services. It holds key positions in its three main activities: Retail Banking, Investment Solutions and Corporate & Investment Banking. It has four domestic retail banking markets in Europe: Belgium, France, Italy and Luxembourg. BNP Paribas also has a significant presence in the United States and strong positions in Asia and the emerging markets.