Let’s face it, without the charities and social enterprises we work with Social Investment Business wouldn’t exist.
All too often the community organisations we support don’t receive the credit they deserve. So when their hard work is formally recognised, we think it’s worth shouting about.
The Queens Awards for Voluntary Service (QAVS), the highest award given to volunteer organisations in the UK, offers one such opportunity. This month has seen the nomination and triumph of two organisations we’ve supported.
As well as receiving a certificate from the Queen, an invitation to an exclusive royal garden party and a glass crystal trophy the winning organisations also benefit from the knowledge of increased confidence from their beneficiaries and an enhanced reputation among their peers.
So who are the winners? – let’s find out.
Hebden Bridge Community Association
Hebden Bridge Community Association (HBCA) won a QAVS award in recognition of their volunteer-led response to the devastating Boxing Day floods of 2015.
They received £2m of funding from us via Communitybuilders several years ago to refurbish and expand their community-owned town hall.
That town hall became a makeshift emergency-response hub following the floods. HBCA helped co-ordinate volunteers to help in the clean-up operation, housed a food bank and even supplied cleaning products to the local people affected.
They also supported the creation of a database to match the skills of volunteers to specific problems and provided free Wi-Fi internet access at their centre.
“The volunteer response to the floods of December 2015 was truly remarkable. People of all backgrounds and faith groups joined with us to provide essential help for people affected by the floods…The Town Hall is a community building and our combined efforts demonstrated what can be achieved when a strong community works together.”
Richard Needham, Interim Chair, Hebden Bridge Community Association
The Estuary League of Friends
Estuary League of Friends (ELF) received their award for their unrelenting commitment to older people in the South West of England.
Having received a Big Potential investment readiness grant of just over £29,000, ELF were able to put their plan to develop a community hub into action and expand their services.
Dedicated to reducing social exclusion, it was ELF’s variety of high quality offerings, including lunch clubs, friendship groups and transport to health appointments that caught the attention of the QAVS judges.
“We are all thrilled with this news! It comes at such important time for Estuary… as we start work on the £1.85 million Community Hub development which will allow Estuary to grow meet rising local need and will help safeguard the future of local service infrastructure in our area.”
Rachel Gilpin, Chief Executive, ELF
We would like to extend a big well done from everyone at Social Investment Business to all the QAVS award winners. Keep up the good work!
If you've received a grant or loan from us and have been recognised for an achievement, we'd love to hear about it. Get in touch with us at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Photo credit: (Hebden Bridge) Craig Shaw Blu Planet Photography