Last Tuesday (6 June 2017) we hosted the inaugural Reading Volunteer Awards. The night brought together over 140 members of the local community to acknowledge and celebrate the extraordinary contribution that volunteers and volunteering make to life in our town.
The fun-filled evening included entertainment provided by two young singers and a performance from the street dance crew SwagOut Revolutionz as well as plenty of opportunities to make links with fellow volunteers from a wide range of organisations from across the town.
Individual honours were given to 20 local volunteers and the work of 11 groups was highlighted on the evening, see full list below. One of our Community Photographer team, Russell Ede was on hand to capture images of the night that can be viewed below.
Feedback has been incredibly positive and we will certainly be working hard over the coming year to make sure the Reading Volunteer Awards 2018 is even bigger and better!
Our thanks to our sponsors The University of Reading Careers Department and NCS The Challenge. Thanks also to all the team at Shehnai Olympia Ballroom, especially Jaideep Dudeja and Emma Wilson, for the use of the space and their assistance in planning the night.
Individual Award Winners
Can-do Volunteer Awards – Recognising those volunteers who frequently go above and beyond the expected and demonstrate the kind of can-do attitude that gets things done.
Winners: Alice Driver (Reading Refugee Support Group), Maggie McMillan (Smart Works Reading), Rhianna Blanchard (Reading Your Way)
Neighbourhood Award – Recognising those contributing to making life in their corner of Reading better for all.
Winners: Peter Kayes (Readlands & University Neighbourhood Action Group), Roger Williams (Reading Neighbourhood Network), Bill Hellings (Age UK Reading Gardening Service)
Behind the Scenes – Recognising the vital role that volunteers play behind the scenes that helps ensure that the frontline work gets done.
Winners: Lynda Miller (Launchpad Reading), Cathy Hills (Reading Voluntary Action)
The Yes Award (Young Volunteers) Sponsored by NCS the Challenge – Recognising the contribution made by younger volunteers, inspiring others to get involved.
Winners: Jenna Butt (Engineers Without Borders-UK Reading Regional Network), Harry Sleep (The Challenge), Hannah Micuta (The Challenge)
Student Volunteers Sponsored by the University of Reading – Acknowledging the positive contribution to the local community made by those who come to Reading, from across the UK and beyond, to study.
Winners: Tim Davis, James Eavis, Fiorella Isles (All Bulmershe School)
Life in Reading – Recognising those volunteers who work to make Reading the unique0, vibrant and creative place we all know it is.
Winners: Paul Britt (Reading Pride), Stuart Ward (Repair Cafe), Eddie Winship (Blast Community Radio)
Long Standing – Recognising the consistent significant contributions made by volunteers over an extended period of time.
Winners: Pam Downing (Reading’s Talking Newspaper), Peter Claridge (The Rising Sun Arts Centre), Sheila Bowcock (Reading Libraries Rhymetime)
Launchpad Reading, Reading Bicycle Kitchen, The Three Cooks, Smart Works Reading, Reading Refugee Support Group, Reading Community Learning Centre,The Rising Sun Arts Centre, NCS The Challenge Graduates 2015-17, Reading Film Theatre, IRIS Reading,
Team of the Year 2017 – Greater Reading Nepalese Community Association (GRNCA)