Children’s Society award for loyal volunteer

A volunteer from Bradford on Avon has had her hard work and dedication recognised after winning a National Volunteering Award from The Children’s Society.

 

The award was presented by Jim Davies, Head of the charity’s youth engagement team.

Liz Forbes has been supporting the charity her whole life and says she is delighted to have won.

She said: “I feel so honoured to have been recognised for the work I do. I love volunteering for The Children’s Society. Once I started that was it, I was hooked.

“The fact we are raising money to help children and the information we are given about how the charity supports vulnerable young people who really need help has really encouraged me to stay and do as much as I can.”

Mrs Forbes chairs the charity’s Bradford on Avon fundraising committee and has been recognised for her years of exemplary commitment.

The committee has raised more than £53,000 for the charity including organising a Christingle service every year since the early 1970s.

Liz’s history with the charity dates back to her own childhood, as Gill Ford, local Relationship Manager explains: “Liz’s journey with us goes right back over 60 years to childhood memories volunteering in our frontline services.

“It’s wonderful that she remembers the first Christingle held on behalf of the charity in Lincoln Cathedral fifty years ago.

“Her dad, a vicar, then organised the first one in their own church and she has carried on the tradition every year since.”

In the last year, The Children’s Society’s engaged with 9,716 volunteers who together contributed nearly 600,000 hours of time worth over £8.4 million pounds.

Finn Grant, Director of Volunteering at The Children’s Society said: “The Children’s Society provides a wide range of services to vulnerable children and young people including supporting those with mental health issues, at risk of sexual and criminal exploitation, living in poverty or in care and more.

“Community volunteers, like Liz help raise awareness of our work in cities, towns and villages across the country.

“Their hard work organising talks, events, meetings, box openings and Christingle celebrations is truly remarkable and does make a huge difference.”

Mrs Forbes is one of 5,500 committed community volunteers and whether it’s quizzes, quilt making or Christingle, her creativity comes across in everything she does.

She’s made papier-mâché oranges, created paper chains around a school, and even had fresh oranges flown in from Cyprus when her husband was in the army.

She also works hard to get new churches and schools involved in the charity, travelling long distances to attend events and always persuading others with her enthusiasm for the charity’s work.

“I took them down to The Shambles in the town centre and they performed for a few hours, they were so talented and it raised a really good amount of money.”

The Children’s Society volunteering awards started in 2015 and since then have been recognising the extraordinary work of people giving their time for free to help change the lives of young people around Britain.

Mr Forbes was presented her award by Gill Ford, who said: “Liz is an inspiration to me, I’m so grateful to have had the pleasure of knowing her for almost a decade.

“She is one of those people who is always smiling and always wants to do more, she’s a wonderful woman.”

If you would like to find out more about volunteering visit www.childrenssociety.org.uk/volunteer

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