About the EURORDIS Black Pearl Awards
The 8th edition of the EURORDIS Black Pearl Awards took place on 12 February 2019 at Le Plaza Hotel Brussels.
The EURORDIS Black Pearl Awards is an annual awards ceremony which takes place in Brussels in February to launch the month of Rare Disease Day. Since 2012, EURORDIS-Rare Diseases Europe has organised this event to recognise the major achievements and outstanding commitment of patient advocates, patient organisations, policy makers, scientists, companies and media who strive to make a difference for the rare disease community.
18.30 – 20.45 Welcome Address & Seated Dinner
20.45 – 22.30 Awards Ceremony
22.30 – 23.00 After dinner networking
Why is the event called the “EURORDIS Black Pearl Awards”?
The formation of a natural black pearl is extremely rare – just like these pearls, the recipients of the EURORDIS Black Pearl Awards are unique and deserve our recognition and admiration. The EURORDIS Black Pearl Awards are presented to individuals, organisations and companies who dedicate their lives to making a difference for the rare disease community. Despite important advances, the rare disease community continues to face enormous challenges. The work and achievements of the awardees are of paramount importance to improving lives and finding cures for people living with a rare disease.
Why in February?
The EURORDIS Black Pearl Awards takes place beginning February to launch the month of Rare Disease Day; an international awareness-raising campaign for rare diseases, led by EURORDIS. During February, thousands of events take place in over 90 countries and regions, uniting millions of people living with a rare disease worldwide.
When and where?
Dr Carrie Grant was the Master of Ceremony for the second consecutive year, for the EURORDIS Black Pearl Awards 2019.
Dr Carrie Grant is a Bafta award-winning Broadcaster and campaigner. She first came to the public’s attention as a judge and vocal coach on BBC 1’s Fame Academy, and is now a presenter on BBC’s The One Show. She has a No. 1 selling book and the most successful online vocal coaching course in the World. Carrie has Crohn’s Disease and, as a campaigner, has travelled worldwide, speaking publicly and chairing panels on sustainable health. She is President of the Unite Union for Community Practitioners and Health Visitors, and also the Patient Lead for The College of Medicine. She sits on the North London Commissioning Board for Learning Disability, Autism and Mental Health. Carrie has four children – three birth, one adopted – all with special needs, and runs a number of Parent Support groups from her home in London. In 2018, Carrie was awarded an Honorary Doctor of Arts by the University of Bedfordshire for her outstanding services to charity.
Royal Presence at the Awards
H.R.H. Princess Maria of Romania attended the Black Pearl Awards 2019 as our Guest of Honour. She also represented her sister, Her Majesty Princess Margareta, Custodian of the Crown of Romania, making the link to the EU Presidency of Romania.