A blog by WiSE Chief Operating Officer, Mark Dobson

What a moment!

When the incredible news landed that we’d been named recipients of the Queen’s Award for Voluntary Service I smiled from ear to ear. It undoubtedly ranks as my proudest moment working for WiSE.

My thoughts immediately turned though to our army of outstanding volunteers whose dedication, selflessness and energy this prestigious award is all about.

The Queen’s Award for Voluntary Service is the equivalent of an MBE and is the greatest honour a charity like ours can ever receive. The fact the announcement has coincided with Her Majesty’s Platinum Jubilee celebrations makes it feel even more special.

The award represents deserved appreciation for the efforts of our incredible volunteers over many years. Volunteers are the lifeblood of our work- generously giving their time to help older people in Wetherby and its surrounding villages live healthy, fulfilling lives

Our charity offers advice and information, activities, transport, befriending and a myriad of other services- almost all of which are supported by volunteers in some way.

During the pandemic, our determined volunteers ensured that people of all ages never went without prescriptions, medicine, food or shopping.

Then, when we restored core services as pandemic protections eased, our volunteers have stepped in again- contributing hundreds of hours of their time to support events and activities across our catchment area.

Put simply, volunteers are vital to our success. Without them we could not continue to develop our services and programme of events.

Our volunteers range from young people to very senior adults and we’re always on the look out for more.

Our Volunteer Co‐ordinator is based at our Wetherby offices and welcomes enquiries from anyone aged 16 or over who wants to support people in our community. Please do get in touch if you’re interested.

But in the meantime, THANK YOU to every single one of our 130 strong army of volunteers. This incredible award is the very least you deserve.

And, of course, to Her Majesty and everyone behind the Queen’s Award for Voluntary Service- thank you!

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