Beaconhouse is a socially responsible organisation committed to providing community services through educational projects.
Beaconhouse National University
Beaconhouse has contributed $6 million in seed money to establish the not-for-profit Beaconhouse National University in Lahore. While Beaconhouse is the original sponsor of the university, other stakeholders, public and private, have also contributed money and resources.
Beaconhouse National University (BNU) opened in 2003 as Pakistan’s first broad-based liberal arts university comprised of schools of Liberal Arts, Social Sciences, Media and Communications, Education, Architecture and Design, Visual Arts, and Information and Computer Technologies. BNU faculty come from a range of countries, including England, Holland, Canada, France, Germany, and Pakistan.
The University’s Vice Chancellor, Sartaj Aziz, is a former Finance Minister of Pakistan, and its board of governors includes Beaconhouse Chairperson Nasreen Kasuri, social activist Parvez Hassan, industrialist Hussain Dawood, and Shahid Kardar, another former finance minister of Pakistan.
Currently housed in a temporary campus in Lahore, the University will start relocating to a permanent, purpose-built campus on a 35-acre estate on the outskirts of the city this autumn.
Beaconhouse acted urgently after the October 2005 earthquake that devastated Pakistan’s northern areas. It immediately donated Rs10,000,000 to the President’s Earthquake Relief Fund; of this sum Rs3,000,000 was contributed by Beaconhouse staff who donated a day’s salary. Furthermore, by mobilising its staff and students to organise school-based activities throughout the country, Beaconhouse has so far raised a further Rs30,000,000 for the reconstruction of a school in earthquake-hit areas.
These funds have been used to build a government school in Chinari, a village that was very badly hit by the earthquake. The school has been built and transferred to the Government of Azad Kashmir.
Aid for IDPS
More recently, Beaconhouse donated Rs 10 million towards the relief of IDPs. In addition, staff members contributed one day’s salary amounting to a total of Rs 5 million and our students’ fundraising activities raised a total of just under Rs 10 million. Beaconhouse also initiated a relief operation for the internally displaced persons at the camps in Mardan, targeted at providing assistance to between 3,000 to 5,000 families, and spearheaded by over 120 senior employees and teachers.
Beaconhouse has forged a culture of community service. Recent initiatives include supporting NGO and government schools in teacher training, and also an ongoing programme of donating computers, furniture, books, and other equipment to underprivileged schools. Senior students in Beaconhouse are also actively encouraged to participate in local community service programmes.