Social Responsibility

Volunteer of the Year Awards

Tue, 24 May 2016 09:47:00 BST

The annual Volunteer of the Year Awards took place in the Whitworth Hall on 11th May, attended by over 170 guests.

The awards, which are now in their seventh year, recognise the outstanding achievement of students, staff and alumni who give their personal time and energy to undertaking public engagement work or volunteering with disadvantaged groups in the community.

The volunteering undertaken by nominees was wide-ranging including within health, with children and vulnerable adults, and community cohesion projects. The volunteering took place locally, nationally and internationally including in Indonesia, Jamaica, Madagascar, Afghanistan and Tanzania. Certificates for all commended and highly commended nominees were given out by Professor Dame Nancy Rothwell, President and Vice Chancellor.

The overall winners in each category also received the University Medal for Social Responsibility, part of the suite of established President's Distinguished Achievement Awards. First, second and third places also receive a donation to support the organisations where they volunteer.

This year’s winners were: Student Category: Sarah Brown from the School of Arts, Languages and Cultures. Sarah is this year’s Chair of Student Action as well as running her own Student Action project for adults with learning difficulties, being involved with the Life Foundation which supports people living in the care system in Romania; Retrak, which works with children living on the streets and is also a trained Dementia Friend Champion.

Staff Category: Kirsty Keywood, School of Law. Kirsty has volunteered for more than two decades. She advocates for the rights of people with learning difficulties and mental health problems in a number of ways including having volunteered as an appropriate adult for Greater Manchester Police and supporting the development of services of the Manchester People First charity.

Alumni Category: John Norgrove, BSc (T) Hons Civil Engineering 1971. Alongside his wife, John he set up the Linda Norgrove Foundation, following the tragic death of his daughter Linda who had been working in Afghanistan. The foundation which John runs day to day, provides support to a range of small-scale community projects in Afghanistan focusing on the most vulnerable in a post-conflict State. Full information on all the winners including videos about their work can be found on the Volunteering website.

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