Peter Gillespie Social Justice Award


2017 Peter Gillespie Award for Social Justice, awarded to the Canadian Council for Muslim Women
Peter Gillespie Award for Social Justice: 2017 recipient - Canadian Council for Muslim WomenCredit: Kristina Corre

Announced in 2016 and launched in 2017, this award is a tribute to the social justice legacy of Peter Gillespie by honouring Canadian organizations working for social justice in Canada or internationally.

The recipient organization is invited to Ottawa for an exchange with Inter Pares on advocacy and networking strategies, including:

  • travel and accommodation expenses for five days in Ottawa (if the recipient organization is not based in the national capital region) for two representatives of the recipient organization;
  • a public speaking opportunity following the presentation of the award at Inter Pares' annual Speaker Series event;
  • meetings with MPs and Senators and/or their staff, depending on availability;
  • meetings in Ottawa with women’s rights organizations working nationally and internationally;
  • meetings with Inter Pares staff members to exchange ideas and mutual support related to organizational management, fundraising, and advocacy;
  • sharing of the recipient organization’s publications and events through Inter Pares communications channels over a six-month period.

The award is also an opportunity for Inter Pares to get acquainted with the inspiring work of the recipient organization and to learn from their experience. As always in our work, the learning journey is mutual.

Who was Peter?                                                                     

Over the twenty-five years that Peter worked for Inter Pares (1985-2010), he brought his passion, courage, talent, and deep commitment to social justice to many issues and struggles around the world. Most notable among these were his years of collaboration with civil society organizations in Bangladesh, building movements for food sovereignty, landless rights, and democracy; his challenge to population control measures and discourse, exposing their racist and anti-poor underpinnings, and supporting the dismantlement of coercive programs; his relentless promotion of human rights in Burma, including raising millions of dollars to support refugees and displaced people; his solidarity with sugarworkers in the Philippines, who succeeded in transforming a feudal system and gaining rights to their land; his work in drawing public and government attention to the consequences of massive capital flight and tax evasion from developing countries into the global financial system. Throughout, he was also a staunch ally and supporter of women’s struggles for justice and autonomy, both in Canada and abroad.

Nomination Criteria

Eligible organizations:

  • have a total budget of approximately $500,000 or less
  • be a Canadian organization or group whose work addresses the theme highlighted for that given year
  • not be an existing Inter Pares counterpart

Nominations deadline

The deadline for 2017 nominations has passed. Please stay tuned for the announcement when nominations open for the 2018 award.

Selection process

A selection committee of four people analyzes the nominations received and verifies eligibility. The choice of the selection committee is based on an analysis of the organization’s impact, innovation, community engagement, and leadership.

Please contact Inter Pares staff members Mariétou Diallo and Jack Hui Litster if you have any questions.