Rennie Grove Hospice Care’s 1,500-strong team of volunteers has been awarded the ultimate honour available for volunteer groups, The Queen’s Award for Voluntary Service 2017.
Created in 2002 to celebrate the anniversary of The Queen’s coronation, The Queen’s Award for Voluntary Service is the highest award given to local volunteer groups across the UK to recognise outstanding work done in their own communities. It is the MBE for volunteer groups.
Jenny Provin, Chief Executive of Rennie Grove Hospice Care said: “We are so proud and delighted that our volunteers have been honoured in this way. Volunteers underpin everything we do at Rennie Grove and make invaluable contributions throughout the organisation. Without them we simply would not be able to provide our high quality services to support adults, children and families in the local community coping with life-limiting illness.”
Operating in a wide variety of roles including trustees, van drivers, complementary therapists, Family Support listeners, shop assistants, receptionists, office helpers and event marshals, over 1,500 volunteers give around 140,000 hours of their time to help the charity every year. An evaluation project undertaken last year put a conservative estimate of the value of this time at £1.5 million.
Jenny continued; “Every year we say a heartfelt thank you to our volunteers but it always feels a little inadequate, so it is particularly special that the scale of their contribution has now been recognised with this award.”
The Lord Lieutenant of Hertfordshire, as The Queen’s representative, will be arranging to present a certificate, signed by The Queen, and a commemorative crystal at a local ceremony over the coming months.
As a result of receiving the award, David Coles and Barbara Brereton were invited to represent the group of volunteers at the Buckingham Palace Garden Party on 16 May. David and Barbara are dedicated volunteers and have for many years been involved in a variety of voluntary roles, supporting the charity that cared for their respective partners.
Barbara said; “David and I felt extremely privileged to be invited to the Garden Party. We are both immensely proud to be part of such a large and diverse volunteer team and are pleased that together we can help ensure that local families can continue to benefit from the same fantastic support we received.”
Jenny concludes: “With the number of local families needing our help rising every year we need to work in the most efficient and effective ways possible and our volunteer team helps us to do this. We are always looking for new people to become volunteers, so whether you just have a few hours a year to offer as a street collector or event marshal or you can make a more regular gift of your time and skills, please do consider becoming part of our award-winning and immensely valuable team.”
To find out more about volunteering at Rennie Grove, please go to www.renniegrove.org/volunteer.
Pictured: Barbara Brereton and David Coles