Time to nominate for volunteering awards

YAWN16 receive the Panel's Choice Award.

YAWN16 receive the Panel's Choice Award.

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Nominations have opened for the third Cheering Volunteering awards which recognise those who help others.

The event is organised by Central Bedfordshire Council, working in partnership with the Volunteer Centres as part of Central Bedfordshire Together.

Sponsored by Biffa, Aragon Housing, the Fire Service, ProLogis and Jeakins Weir, the Grove Theatre in Dunstable will again host the awards on June 6.

Last time seven awards were presented on the night, with winners ranging from brownie and guide leaders, to community fundraisers and drop-in cafés. The 2016 winners have also been invited to the council chairman’s annual civic reception next month to mark their achievements.

There will again be seven awards in 2017:

Young Volunteer of the Year

Volunteer of the Year

Volunteer Group of the Year

Outstanding Contribution

Lifetime Achievement

Fundraiser of the Year

Panel’s Choice

Nominations opened on Wednesday, January 11, and free tickets to the event will also be available from the Grove Theatre from this month.

Small awards of grant funding will be presented on the night to local groups to help create and support new volunteering opportunities.

Councillor Carole Hegley, Executive Member for Social Care and Housing at Central Bedfordshire Council, who led the 2016 event, said: “Cheering Volunteering is a highlight of the year’s calendar as far as I’m concerned – I hope that it will be even bigger and better than ever in 2017.”

Cllr Caroline Maudlin, Deputy Executive Member for Stronger Communities, added: “We really hope the success of Cheering Volunteering continues to grow year on year. It is such a privilege to celebrate the often unheralded work which volunteers do across Central Bedfordshire.

“Hearing about the amazing work which they do and the impact which it has on the individuals and groups who benefit was incredibly humbling. Helping others by volunteering can be so rewarding, and with local businesses sponsoring this event it is a great way for us to celebrate and thank your volunteers for what they do.

“So, if you want to say thank you to a special volunteer or volunteers, please put them forward for an award when nominations open this month. And make sure you book your free tickets for the event too, as you are guaranteed a great night out.”

To find out more about volunteering opportunities across Central Bedfordshire, visit http://www.centralbedfordshire.gov.uk/council/stronger-communities/volunteering.aspx