The June Jacobs Award & Grant

June Jacobs CBE (1930-2018)

June Jacobs, pictured in 1971 delivering a letter to the Russian ambassador (left), and staging a 24-hour hunger strike outside the embassy later that year (right).

June Jacobs was a fearless campaigner who did great work for the causes she adopted, including the rights of women and oppressed minorities around the world, and the cause of peace in the Middle East. She was the founder of the National Council for Soviet Jewry and travelled frequently to the Soviet Union in the 1970s to meet and campaign for ‘refuseniks’, who had been denied permission to emigrate.

The list of organisations with which she was associated includes the International Council of Jewish Women; Jewish Council for Racial Equality (JCORE); National Alliance of Women’s Organisations; Next Century Foundation; New Israel Fund and Jewish Child’s Day.

In 1989, as the Board of Deputies of British Jews foreign affairs spokesperson, she controversially met with the Palestine Liberation Organisation (PLO) representative Bassam Abu Sharif. In 2009 she was awarded a CBE for services to human rights and inter-faith relations. In a newspaper interview after receiving her CBE, she said of her meeting with Mr Abu Sharif: “It was the right thing to do. How else can we attempt to bring peace if we don’t talk?”.

June was also a dearly loved mother, grandmother and great-grandmother.

The June Jacobs Award & Grant

The June Jacobs Award and Grant are generously endowed by June’s three children.  Her son, Robin, has worked at Channing for more than 30 years and instituted these in her memory.

The June Jacobs Award (engraved statuette and prize of £100) is to be presented annually to a student in Year 13 who best represents the values and character of June Jacobs, campaigner for the rights of women and oppressed minorities.

The recipient of the June Jacobs Award will have changed life at Channing by demonstrating some or all of the following attributes:

  • The willingness to stand up and fight for their beliefs
  • A strong moral compass and strength of character
  • Making a difference for minority or overlooked groups at Channing through their actions

The June Jacobs Grant is open to applications from students in their final year at Channing who seek funding for work with minority or oppressed groups in the local community in their spare time or during a gap year.  Applications should be made to the Headmistress by February half term of Year 13 and include:

  • Details of the proposed volunteering or project work with a registered charity, including location and timescale
  • Focus on the minority group(s) involved e.g. working with homeless people, refugees, disability groups
  • Explanation of what the funding will be used for

A total grant of £400 is available each year and may be awarded to an individual or split between two or more recipients depending on the number and quality of applications received.