The Stella Prize is secured forever
Stella is proud to announce that it has successfully reached its endowment target of $3 million for the Stella Forever Fund – securing prize money for the Stella Prize in perpetuity.
The successful outcome ensures that the Stella Prize will be a permanent fixture in Australia’s literary culture, allowing us to continue our work celebrating and rewarding outstanding books by Australian women and non-binary writers.
In response to the announcement, Stella’s Executive Director Jaclyn Booton says:
“It’s hard to make a living as a writer in Australia and prize money can be a significant component of an author’s livelihood. By securing prize money for the Stella Prize in perpetuity, we are making a commitment to putting money directly into the pockets of Australian women and non-binary writers, so that they can create outstanding works of literature – now and into the future.”
Stella launched the Stella Forever Fund in 2016 with the support of visionary patrons, Paula McLean and Ellen Koshland. In 2021, Stella was honoured with an extraordinary further gift of $1 million from Paula McLean, in one of the largest donations to Australian literature to date.
Leading Stella Patron, Paula McLean with 2014 Stella Prize winner Clare Wright at the 2022 Stella Prize Award Night. Photo credit: Marie-Luise Skibbe.
Leading patron of the Stella Forever Fund, Paula McLean says:
“I’m thrilled that so many donors around Australia have participated in the Stella Forever match campaign, making the endowment goal of $3 million a reality—a Prize that will continue to support Stella writers in perpetuity. It speaks to the inclusive literary culture Stella has created over its first 10 years and to the power of a truly inspirational female-led philanthropy campaign.”
In response to our ambitious goal, Stella was also honoured with major gifts from a range of individuals and organisations passionate about gender equality, literature, and the transformative power of philanthropy.
For their major contribution to the Stella Forever Fund, Stella thanks the Helen Macpherson Smith Trust, one of Australia’s only philanthropic bodies named after a woman. Stella was granted a gift as part of the foundation’s focus on women and girls, in honour of Helen’s life and impact.
Stella is deeply grateful to the Wilson Foundation for its support for the Stella Prize. Since 2018, the Wilson Foundation has been integral to ensuring that women’s voices and perspectives have a prominent – and permanent – place in Australia’s national culture. Karen Wilson’s philanthropic leadership and commitment to The Stella Prize over the past 6 years has given Stella the confidence and time to embark on one of the most ambitious female led philanthropic campaigns in Australia the Stella Forever Fund.
Thanks to our supporters’ extraordinary vision and generosity, Stella was able to get within arm’s reach of our target. To raise the final amount we called on our grassroots community to help us raise the final $10,000.
Chair of Stella’s Fundraising Committee, Melissa Smith at the 2022 Stella Prize Award at the State Library Victoria. Photo credit: Marie-Luise Skibbe
As Chair of Stella’s Fundraising Committee, Melissa Smith says:
“From the outset, Stella has always been a collective endeavour, and the campaign to secure Stella Forever reflects that. We started with a million dollar gift, and ended with a five dollar gift, and are so grateful to donors at every stage, and at every level of this campaign. We could not have done it without you.”
The announcement was made at the tenth annual Stella Prize Award Night on April 28 2022, moments after Evelyn Araluen was awarded the 2022 Stella Prize for her debut poetry and prose collection Dropbear.
In recognition of the extraordinary collective generosity of its supporters, Stella awarded a further $10,000 to Araluen, bringing the total prize money for the 2022 Stella Prize to $60,000.
The Board and staff of Stella thank all the passionate supporters who have given to the Stella Forever Fund.
Your gift – no matter how big or small – has ensured the Stella Prize will be secured for generations of writers and readers to come.