The Tim Fund Mission
To annually recognize a Tim McCarthy Human Rights Champion, an activist individual or organization with a Cape Cod connection, working effectively to promote Human Rights, as affirmed in the United Nations’ 1948 “Universal Declaration of Human Rights.”
2021 Award Winner - Sandra Faiman-Silva Ph.D. Professor, Writer and Activist
2020 Award Winner - Nauset HS Human Rights Group and their Faculty Advisor Lisa Brown
Cape Cod Chronicle Article - The Nauset HS Human Rights Group
Press Release - 2020 Barnstable County Human Rights Advisory Commission Award Recipients
YouTube Link - The 2020 Barnstable Human Rights Awards Ceremony
2019 Award Winner - Rev. Brenda Haywood of Provincetown, MA
Tim McCarthy was self-described “gay history videographer” based in the Provincetown area, who died unexpectedly late in 2018. His earliest film work involved the AIDS crisis and the response of ACT-UP activists to that challenge, when denial was the official homophobic response to the epidemic of suffering of those dark days.
That engagement took him to seek out the origins of HIV to Africa, where he developed a lifelong linkage with the heavily-persecuted LGBTI community in Uganda. Just last year he completed the documentary of this work, titled “See Me As.” The film consists of interviews conducted by local activists with their peers, sharing a powerful insight to a very marginalized culture. It truly represents the culmination of his decades-long commitment to rights of oppressed peoples, and is emblematic of Tim’s remarkable ability to reach across cultural differences and find shared experiences. But it also reflected his great ongoing courage, in facing the very real personal risks that project entailed for him as an outsider in Africa.
Tim’s often expressed and demonstrated belief was that it is what we do that counts in the end, and that standing up for others’ rights was a moral imperative. With that, he overcame his own fears, and sacrificed his own comforts, to pursue those goals.
For many years, Tim “co-habitated” with the HIV virus. He was determined to live fully in control of his life, and not to be defined by his diagnosis. And had enjoyed good health, until his very untimely passing.
Tim lived and worked for many years on this outer reach of Cape Cod, involved in so many social, political, health and arts and cultural campaigns. His shocking loss was felt deeply by the very many diverse people in this community who’d worked with him and known his boundless energies.
Within weeks of his death, The Tim Fund had been established in his memory by friends, under the long-standing nonprofit Provincetown Community Compact. The award will annually recognize a “Tim McCarthy Human Rights Champion, an activist individual or organization with a Cape Cod connection, working effectively to promote Human Rights.”
This will be a monetary award, intended to be in the two-thousand-dollar range, based on interest earned from the fund. It is intended to encourage further development and networking of human rights activists in the community. An advisory body, now in development, will select the recipients each year. It has been proposed that the announcement of the award will coincide with the recognition of two other regional awards on International Human Rights Day on Cape Cod each December 10th.