Queen’s Award for Voluntary Service goes to two regional charities

The highest award available to volunteer groups across the United Kingdom has been won by two charities in Dumfries and Galloway

Stranraer Cancer Drop-In Centre and the Port William Inshore Rescue Service could finally reveal the brilliant news of their Queen’s Award for Voluntary Service on Sunday.

The award – considered the MBE for voluntary groups – is in recognition of outstanding voluntary work in the community.

The Queen approves the final list of winners after a recommendation from a National Award Committee and the Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport.

Nominations were submitted nationally back in September before the long process to decide the winners, with the final announcement made over the weekend.

For 20 years Stranraer Cancer Drop In Centre has been supporting the local community and some of the very first volunteers are still very much part of the team today.

Aileen McClymont, Centre Manager, said: “We have a team of 20 volunteers who work under an NHS centre manager to provide support and information to cancer patients, their families and carers. We are honoured that the volunteers’ work has been recognised in such a way as to receive this award.”

Port William Inshore Rescue Service is celebrating its 40th anniversary this month, as a lifesaving at sea independent service.

Director Helen Oxley said: “We are thrilled to receive the award and for our volunteers to be recognised to this level.  It is a huge achievement for our small, rural community.  We have instilled the importance of an independent lifeboat service – not only remaining but thriving here in our bay.

“I am very proud of what has been achieved and can only look forward to expanding and promoting our service.  What an honour.”

Fellow director George MacKenzie agreed such a prestigious award was an honour for the service.

The awards were created in 2002 to celebrate the Queen’s Golden Jubilee and winners are announced each year on June 2 – the anniversary of the Queen’s Coronation.

For more on the Stranraer Cancer Drop-In Centre click here: scdic.org.uk/

For more on Port William Inshore Rescue Service click here: www.pirsac.org/.