Pink angels, feeding the homeless and kids charities all recognised
Several Manchester charities and organisations have been recognised in the Queen’s Volunteer awards. A record 34 Greater Manchester organisations were granted the award and several representatives attended a garden party with the Queen in recognition of their hard work.
The awards are the highest honour given to local volunteer groups across the UK, sometimes called ‘the MBE for volunteer groups’. They are awarded to recognise outstanding work done in social, economic or environmental work in the local community.
The Manchester recipients are incredibly diverse, ranging from girl guides to beekeepers. With so many groups to choose from, we are highlighting just a few of this year’s worthy winners.
The Village Angels
You might know them by their hot pink uniforms, familiar from a night out in the Gay Village. The Angels snagged an award in recognition of their work in supporting people who may be vulnerable or at risk in the area. A sister group, the Soho Angels, recently launched; expanding the programme out of Manchester for the first time.
The Sikh Sew Organisation
This group feed homeless people every Sunday as part of the Sikh tradition of langar, serving a free vegetarian feast at every Gurdwara (Sikh temple). This principle is expanded to help homeless people with a hot meal, clothes and other items, concentrating on the Piccadilly Gardens area but open to anyone in need.
The GEM Appeal
Raise money to purchase diagnostic equipment to enable the doctors and scientists at the Royal Manchester Children’s Hospital to research, diagnose and treat children and young people with rare genetic and metabolic disorders. Because of the money raised by the GEM Appeal, children are living longer healthier lives and the future is more positive for those diagnosed now.
On the cultural side….
Elizabeth Gaskell’s House
Recognised for the hard work of its volunteers in preserving the legacy of the nineteenth century northern novelist. Frank Galvin, Chair of Trustees and volunteer said: “This represents a tremendous achievement for Elizabeth Gaskell’s House and we feel immensely proud of what our dedicated and enthusiastic volunteer team has achieved.” Victoria Baths and Ordsall Hall were also honoured.
Finally, those beekeepers also got the nod...
Manchester and District Beekeeper’s District Association
Over seventy volunteers works with this wildlife organisation, based at Heaton Park. Their president, Lena Crowe, said: “We are absolutely delighted to be recipients of the QAVS. It’s an enormous honour and great testament to the many hours of dedication our volunteers give to raise the awareness of how important honey bees and other pollinating insects are to our environment and ultimately our food chain.”
The award is in the form of a commemorative certificate signed by the Queen and a domed glass crystal, presented at a special ceremony at Gorton Monastery this summer.
Any group of two or more people that has participated in voluntary work for more than three years can be nominated for the award. Full details on how to nominate are available here. Nominations for the 2020 awards close on 13 September 2019.
Full list of Greater Manchester awardees:
Barton Athletic Club, Bloco Ashê Bury Community Samba Group , Bolton Solidarity Community Association, Castlefield Forum, Cheadle Mosque and Community Centre, Communities for All Limited , Eden Gardens Allotment Association , Elizabeth Gaskell's House Volunteers, Embrace Wigan and Leigh, GEM Appeal, Girlguiding Greater Manchester West, Hafway, Halliwell Befriending Service, Heywood Children's Charity: Little Monkeys, Kearsley Youth Brass Band, Leigh Cricket Tennis & Bowling Club, Village Angels and Village Haven, Manchester and District Beekeepers' Association Volunteers, Mellor Country House, My Life Legacy, Not Just Soup, Oldham Mountain Rescue Team, Ordsall Hall Volunteers, Proud and Loud Arts, Re:dish, Remembering Srebrenica North West Board, Saath Saath Group, Senior Solutions, Sikh Sewa Organisation, Smile Aid, Springhill Hospice Volunteers, The River Manchester, Victoria Baths Trust, Wigan Little Theatre, Youth Adventure Tameside (YAT)