John Gibbard Memorial Award

Nominations for the 2020 John Gibbard Memorial Award are now being accepted until Friday, October 2nd.

Do you know of a youth or youth group working to make a positive change in our world?  Nominate them today for the John Gibbard Award. 

This is an annual award given by UNAC-Vancouver on the occasion of United Nations Day to celebrate the United Nations and its work towards peace, justice and security. 

The John Gibbard Memorial Award is presented annually by the Vancouver Branch of the UN  Association in Canada in recognition and memory of John Gibbard who was a supporter of the League of Nations from its creation in 1919, in the wake of the First World War.  When the League ceased to exist, John Gibbard continued to support the ideals upon which the League had been founded.  When the United Nations was formed after the Second World War, he became an active member of the UN Association in Canada.  He was dedicated to involving youth in the creation of a better world for all.

The Award is given to youth up to 25 years of age in recognition of their dedication and commitment to working for humanity and a better world locally or internationally.


Nominees or candidates:

  • must be residents of the Metro Vancouver area
  • may be individuals or groups
  • cannot self-nominate
  • must be nominated by a non-relative
  • must be under 25 years old
  • should exemplify the values of good citizenship and personal qualities of a humanitarian
  • Candidates should have taken actions of both or either local and international nature

Nominations must be made in writing and sent to UNAC Vancouver at  or by Friday, October 2nd, 2020. Provide an explanation of why the person or group deserves the award.

The award winner is expected to be present at a ceremony to be held at the Unitarian Church of Vancouver – 949 49th Avenue, Vancouver – on the Sunday which is the closest to October 24th, United Nations Day. 2020’s award will be presented on Sunday, October 25th if circumstances allow. A virtual award program will be organized otherwise.


2018: Andrew Sheroubi

2017: Akanksha Thakur

L to R: George Somerwill (Co-President), Akanksha Thakur (John Gibbard Award Recipient), Rev. Epperson, Greg Neumann (Co-President)

2016: Gurkiran Mann

Kiran’s acceptance speech:

Gurkiran is the founder of Youth Transforming Society (YTS), a registered non-profit organization that aims to raise awareness of global issues and encourage volunteerism among young people.

2015: Anjali Katta She is a gender equality activist and the CEO of Girls Co, founded Bombay Pads to help deliver sanitary pads and sexual education to schools and orphanages in India. Anjali was also a Top 20 under 20 award winner.

2014: Ta’Kaiya Blaney

Ta’Kaiya’s speech

Ta’Kaiya has fought for indigenous and environmental rights

2013: Saskia Vaisey, UBC student and environmental leader

Saskia’s speech

2012: Amnesty Urgent Action Network, Rockridge Secondary, West Vancouver School District

2011: Student Leadership group, Edmonds Community School, Burnaby School District

2010: UN Connections Club, Burnaby School District

2009    Youth Action Committee – Cariboo Hill Secondary School, Burnaby

2008    YMCA Youth Peace Network

2007    Whiterock Elementary Fine Arts Department, Surrey School District

2006    Capilano College Global Stewardship Program, North Vancouver

2005    Society for Children and Youth of B.C.

2004    Global Connections Club – Magee Secondary School, Vancouver

2003    Global Perspectives 12 – Richmond Secondary School, Richmond

2002    H. Dawn Davis

2001    Olivia Sophie Bornik

1997    Multicultural Club, John Oliver Secondary School, Vancouver

1996    Ecole Cleveland Elementary School, Vancouver

1995    United People, Unitarian Church of Vancouver

1994    Jeremy Dyck, Environment Youth Alliance

1993    Severn Cullis-Suzuki

1992    Karen Snowshoe, Tetlit-Gwich’in Nation

1991    Jeff Gibbs, Environmental Youth Alliance

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