There is no financial reward attached to the drug awards. All that there is to drug awards is a certificate and a trophy. Given this fact, one is bound to encounter the question as to whether the awards are worth aspiring for. This, in other words, is a question as to whether the awards are really beneficial: given the fact that there is no monetary reward attached to them. And this is not a theoretical question, but rather one that I have encountered numerous times in my advocacy work.
Whenever I encounter the question as to whether the drug awards are really worth aspiring for, given the fact that there are no monetary rewards attached to them, I usually give one standard answer. This is the answer to the effect that while there may indeed be no direct monetary benefits attached, the drug awards are nonetheless beneficial in another significant way.
The main way in which the drug awards are indirectly beneficial is to the extent that the awards give (external) validation to the winners’ work. Thus, for instance, when a given charity that is involved in the war against drug and alcohol addiction wins one of the drugs awards, the win is a form of validation for the charity’s work. It serves to show that the charity is having impact that can be seen ‘even from outside’. And such external validation is very gratifying — as anyone who has been involved in these kinds of ventures will affirm.
Of course, the drug awards can end up having a financial benefit – in an indirect manner. For instance, if a given charity is involved in work against drugs and alcohol addiction, and it gets one of the drug awards, it is likely to see donors being more willing to contribute funds to its coffers. The donors would be doing so based on appreciation for the fact that the charity work must be having an impact for it to get one of the drug awards. Conversely, a charity that has never won any drug award — and whose work therefore doesn’t have any form of external validation — is likely to struggle to raise funds from donors. This is because the donors would be skeptical about the impact of such a charity’s work.