VOLUNTEERING efforts of individuals and organisations in East Staffordshire have been recognised at an annual awards ceremony.
East Staffordshire CVS held its annual Star Awards ceremony at Marston’s Sports and Social Club and from hundreds of nominations, winners were chosen in 13 categories.
Burton MP Andrew Griffiths handed out the awards which included volunteer of the year, lifetime achievement award and best new volunteer team.
The latter was awarded to Richmond Street Community Gardens which has been set up by residents to brighten up their area and the organisation recently established a community garden.
Burton and District YMCA, the Citizens Advice Bureau and Homestart East Staffordshire were the biggest winners of the night — taking home two awards apiece.
Adrian Bader, who was involved in the re-establishment of the YMCA in Burton in 1985 and has been in a leadership role on the board of trustees for the last 26 years, was handed the Lifetime Achievement Award.
The YMCA’s appeals co-ordinator Gillian Cox won the Community Good Neighbour Award for the sponsored sleepout which has raised thousands for the charity’s Reconnect Project, providing a training and support centre for the homeless.
She said: “I accepted this award on behalf of everyone who took part in the sleepouts. I think it won because it links people who are taking part with what they are raising money for and they end up with real empathy.”
Steve Rawlinson, chief executive of East Staffordshire CVS, said: “The night was a celebration of volunteering where everyone was a winner, whether an active volunteer, a member of a group or an organisation, or the community.
Recognising what people do with the time they give freely is really important, and highlighting personal effort and achievement sets a very positive example for others.
“At East Staffordshire CVS, we are looking forward to working with new volunteering initiatives, in particular those that help companies get involved in local community activity, and we would love to see local businesses being recognised for their efforts at the awards next year.”
The Volunteer Awards is an annual event and will be held again in March 2012