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Gérard Basset Foundation to fund diversity and inclusivity projects worldwide

Published:  10 January, 2022

The Trustees of the Gérard Basset Foundation have announced their intention to award grants to 14 institutional and community partners worldwide, designed to enhance inclusivity across the global wine and hospitality industries.

Among the recipients are the Africa Wine Academy, Ghana, which will use the grant to fund WSET Level 1 and 2 exams for 350 students in Ghana. In addition, the foundation will be working with the KEDGE Wine School, France, with campuses in Bordeaux, Paris, Marseilles and Dakar, Senegal.

Funding will be used to help poorer students enroll on the courses, while additional grants will be used to create a bursary for the KEDGE Wine and Hospitality Management MSc, conducted in partnership with the No. 1 hospitality school in the world, the École Hôtelière de Lausanne, with the student being selected from KEDGE’s Dakar campus.

These grants are in addition to the headline Golden Vines Diversity Scholarships, worth £55,000 each, awarded to Angela Scott DipWSET and Dr Erna Blancquaert in October, as well as the Golden Vines Master of Wine & Master Sommelier Scholarships, worth £12,500 each and awarded to Mags Jango DipWSET and Winnie Toh.

The foundation raised over £1,200,000 at the Golden Vines Awards Ceremony & Dinner and related auctions, held at Annabel’s Private Members Club in October last year.

Nina Basset, Trustee of the Gérard Basset Foundation, commented: “With the unprecedented success of the Golden Vines – organised by our partner, Liquid Icons – the Foundation has been able to distribute significantly more funds than we could have imagined to further the cause of diversity and inclusivity in the wine industry and – from next year – the spirit and hospitality sectors.”

She added: “We received 23 applications for funding globally, with the Trustees choosing to fund 14 of these submissions from the UK, Europe, North America, Africa and Australia. However, this is just the start. We hope to be able to put larger sums to work in future years thanks to the generosity of the enormous number of fine wine estates and rare spirit distilleries who are supporting the Foundation through their participation in the Golden Vines Fine Wine, Rare Spirit & Experience Auction, the next edition of which will go live on 1 October 2022.”