Unsung community heroes from four organisations across the City of Wolverhampton are celebrating after learning they are to receive the highest award for volunteer groups in the country.
Compton Bereavement Centre, Beacon Centre for the Blind, Positive Participation and Wolverhampton Wheelers Cycling Club found out they had been given the royal seal of approval after being handed a Queen’s Award for Voluntary Service (QAVS) on Saturday (JUNE 2).
The QAVS recognises outstanding work done in communities and is the equivalent of the MBE for volunteer groups.
With four groups receiving the QAVS, City of Wolverhampton has the second highest number of award-winners in the West Midlands.
Compton Care Bereavement Visitors: Compton Care’s volunteers help hundreds of people every year to come to terms with their experiences of grief by providing friendship, emotional support and the opportunity to talk openly without judgement. They offer one-to-one support or group sessions to people either in the hospice or their own homes.
Beacon Centre for the Blind: This registered charity which, with the help of 90 volunteers, supports more than 3,000 service users is the main provider for visually impaired people across the Black Country and Staffordshire. It has been doing so for more than 140 years. Volunteers help out in areas including mentoring and befriending, retail, hospitality, front of house, community-based activities and day centre provision.
Wolverhampton Wheelers Cycling Club: This group, based at WV Active Aldersley, encourages and develops people of all ages to enjoy cycling. It is run entirely by 90 dedicated volunteers and members aged from 8 to 90. Volunteer tutors are qualified to a national standard and there is a strong emphasis on safety and healthy lifestyles. Wolverhampton Wheelers recently celebrated its 125th anniversary.
Positive Participation: This group aims to prevent and improve mental ill health and reduce isolation which can be caused by mental health problems primarily within the Asian community thorough the provision of culturally sensitive community support services.
Mayor of the City of Wolverhampton, Cllr Phil Page, congratulated all the city’s QAVS winners. He said:
The QAVS honours all those unsung heroes and heroines in our community who work tirelessly making a huge difference to the lives of so many. They are the MBE for the voluntary sector and to receive a QAVS is the highest honour a volunteer organisation can receive. Our four winners and their army of volunteers truly deserve their accolade and I congratulate each and every one of them. The theme for my year in office is ‘service over self’ and our QAVS winners really embody that spirit.”
The QAVS were created in 2002 to mark the Queen’s golden jubilee.
Every year the winners are announced on June 2 which is the anniversary of the coronation.
The Lord-Lieutenant of the West Midlands presents the awards on behalf of Her Majesty The Queen.
Any group doing volunteer work that provides a social, economic or environmental service to the community can be nominated for the QAVS.
For more information visit https://qavs.direct.gov.uk
Issued by the City of Wolverhampton Council’s Corporate Communications Team.
Image caption: (LtR) Ranjit Boparai, Mike Hann, Arwyn Jones, Mike Tolfree and Becky Sinar from Beacon Centre for the Blind celebrate winning the QAVS.