Community volunteers’ efforts recognised at South Shields ceremony

Volunteers being recognised for their dedication to helping to support groups based in community centres.
Volunteers being recognised for their dedication to helping to support groups based in community centres.

Volunteers have been thanked for giving up their time to help out groups at community centres across South Tyneside.

A ceremony was held at South Shields Town Hall to recognise people for their hard work and dedication in running groups supporting their communities.

Volunteers are the lifeblood of so many of our organisations.

Coun Richard Porthouse

Those recognised included South Shields Volunteer Lifeguard Club secretary Penny Wilkinson, named as volunteer of the year.

Jarrow Musical Theatre Company was named as community group of the year, with the award being presented to Grayson Wood and Lawrence Clarke.

Christopher Perry accepted the award for young persons on behalf of South Tyneside Academy of Musical Performance, a community theatre group based at Brinkburn Community Association in South Shields.

South Tyneside Mayor Coun Richard Porthouse said: “Volunteers are the lifeblood of so many of our organisations.

“Without their work and support, many sporting clubs and community groups would no longer be able to operate. It is, therefore, only right that their contribution is rewarded in this way.”

More than 9,000 members take part in a range of activities at the borough’s 14 community associations, ranging from running youth clubs to taking part in performing arts.

Coun Pat Hay, chairman of the Federation of Community Associations in South Tyneside, the organisation that hosted the event, said: “The contribution our volunteers make to our communities cannot be overstated.

“Volunteers are the unsung heroes of society.

“We here in South Tyneside appreciate the time that they give working with our community groups.”

The event in South Tyneside was one of hundreds across the UK held during National Volunteers Week.

 There is still time to nominate a volunteer for an award.

South Tyneside Council for Voluntary Service has launched its volunteer awards.

There are four categories – for groups or individuals helping within the community, for those helping people to improve their overall health and wellbeing, for those supporting young people and families and for the volunteer of the year.

The deadline for nominations is Monday, August 3. To nominate someone, call Ian Carr on 0191 456 9555 or e-mail iancarr@stcvs.org.uk.