HALO Founder Wins Burns Prize

Guy Willoughby, founder of the Scotland-based HALO Trust, one of the world’s largest humanitarian demining NGOs, was given the Robert Burns Humanitarian Award in recognition for his service to people living in war-torn communities. The annual award recognizes “a group or individual who has saved, improved or enriched the lives of others or society as a whole.

“He has tirelessly driven forward work to rid the world’s most impoverished communities of deadly war debris and saved thousands of people from being killed or severely maimed by landmines or bombs,” said Scotland’s First Minister Alex Salmond, who presented the award.

Willoughby is famously willing to express controversial criticisms of the mine action community, prone to making provocative statements on the use of demining dogs, campaign conferences and misallocation of aid. Indeed, shortly before receiving his award, Willoughby told Scotland’s Sunday Herald that Princess Diana — the glamorous late patron of the mine action community — would have been “flipping irritated” with the “plethora of organisations and bureaucracy into the world of mine clearance.

To see The Observer‘s profile of Willoughby, click here.

Despite his formidable reputation, Willoughby has been a strong supporter and friend of Political Minefields — even opening HALO’s archives to assist with the “Sudan’s Expensive Landmines” report.  Political Minefields wishes him a hearty congratulations!

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~ by Matthew Bolton on 19 May 2009.

One Response to “HALO Founder Wins Burns Prize”

  1. […] Lauds Aid Workers Following the receipt of the Burns Humanitarian Award, Guy Willoughby, director of the demining NGO HALO Trust is calling for more recognition of aid […]

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