The Blaker Education Fund was established in 2006 from the Estate of the late George Blaker, founder of the SMN, to support small-scale projects in the field of education particularly for young people aged approximately 15-30 and in line with the overall mission and charitable objects of the SMN. Blaker funds have supported projects such as:
- Experiential Introduction to Mindfulness Meditation Course for all first year medical students at the University of Southampton. The course includes guided practice and self-reflection sessions that make up classic mindfulness courses, as well as additional sessions addressing relevant theory, empirical support and a range of clinical application.
- SMN & the One Spirit Alliance in North Wales to engage students on as many levels as possible and to integrate such activities with academic and/or community projects in a way that would establish North Wales as a focus for spiritual, holistic and sustainable activities. Bangor University Transcending Thought is a student centred research forum acted as the local group for the SMN, the Wrekin Trust and the Alister Hardy Society for the Study of Spiritual Experiences and this project was beneficial in enabling the on-going liaison between the Bangor and related university initiatives. A key focus was the active engagement of students and youth from the local community.
- Medicine Beyond Materialism to prepare a training pack and comprehensive text book for universities and medical schools, in order to mainstream seminars into the core curriculum for undergraduates.
- Getting Values Across – Leadership in a Multi-Cultural World in order to aid Regent’s University London in bringing together senior figures in personal development, psychology and psychotherapy and trans-national education to consider values with a new generation of globally-oriented students in the context of an intensive seminar about values, how to identify them for individuals and groups and consider how they might become an embedded part of student life and beyond.
- The Self-Managed Learning College, an organization that facilitates innovative, personalized educational programmes for young people who are not in school to incorporate a learning platform for the investigation of philosophical and scientific ideas across a wide age range of young people from 14 – 30. The College has strong links with a number of organizations providing learning for young people, including Brighton and Sussex Universities.
- A Spirituality Support Network requiring ‘seed money’ for financial support to develop an online community of practice, utilising existing social media such as Twitter and Facebook, as part of a ‘Spirituality Support Network’ for young researchers (primarily aged 21-30) which is being established by the British Association for the Study of Spirituality. This is intended to become a core feature of a cross-disciplinary and inter-professional Spirituality Support Network for doctoral students and early career researchers
The Trustees of the GB Blaker Charitable Trust have requested that the grant, and the interest arising from it, shall be used to fund educational programs, in line with the charitable objects of the SMN Trust and SMN, particularly for young people aged approximately 15-30. Note especially that the intention is that the funds shall be used purely to support such educational programs in science or medicine.
All those who wish to be considered for a grant in the range of £500 to £5000 are requested to apply by 30thJune each year to the Education Domain Holder, Edi Bilimoria, using the form below, for guidance on application.