New awards showcase dedication to Clwyd communities
Community heroes from across the region have been celebrated as part of a brand new awards ceremony introduced by the High Sheriff of Clwyd.
The High Sheriff, Henry Dixon, launched the awards in recognition of the individuals, projects and businesses that do so much to boost the communities of North East Wales.
The inaugural event saw individual volunteers, SMEs, public sector and corporate representatives recognised. Several awards were presented on behalf of partner organisations including Crimebeat, Community Foundation in Wales, Business Supporting Communities and the County Voluntary Councils.
Mr Dixon congratulated the winners and said that he was “humbled” by the work that they do.
He said: “The inaugural High Sheriff of Clwyd’s Community Awards gladdened the heart. The contribution freely given of people, young and old, doing so much for their local communities and that most of us just don’t know about is humbling.”
Mr Dixon paid tribute to the High Sheriff’s charity Crimebeat: “The energy and creativity of the youth projects supported by Crimebeat shines a light on the powerfully positive impact that young people, including teenagers, can have on groups around them,” he said.
“At a dinner attended by interested leaders recently, we discussed the challenges and benefits of our growing ageing population. The challenges often get the headlines – but the benefits of an engaged and committed elder generation was made clear in the awards. Though ‘retired’, the experience, energy, knowledge and capabilities of the three out of four award winners who are post-retirement age was inspirational and the awards will help gain them recognition.”
Among the winners of Crimebeat awards was Us Unltd, a project that has helped to give young people in the region valuable educational and business skills. Many of the project volunteers have been homeless or socially excluded and more than 50 per cent have gone on to secure full-time employment.
The award for Community Philanthropy went to Hywyn Williams and Denbighshire County Council who led the establishment of the Denbighshire Community Endowment Fund in 2012, transferring and modifying £250k of moribund and redundant educational trusts to establish a new fund for Denbighshire, initially focused on education. The award was accepted by Denbighshire County Council Chair Jeanette Chamberlain Jones.
There were also three awards presented on behalf of Business Supporting Communities (B2C). Among the winners Williams Bankes and his team at Gamlins Solicitors who were recognised for their pro bono work in the community, supporting voluntary organisations and community groups across the region with free and impartial legal advice that they would not otherwise be able to afford.
Individual awards were also presented on behalf of the region’s Voluntary Service Councils, including Dr Christine Evans (Denbighshire), for her outstanding contribution to Llanarmon yn Ial, including helping to establish the Llanarmon & District Youth Club, support the village shop and pub and many other activities which have ensured the village has kept its heart and community pride.
Awards were also presented to: Mrs Derryn Blanchard (Flintshire); Louise Bollington (Wrexham); and Alan Edwards (Conwy).
The High Sheriff added: “My congratulations to all the award winners. Long may Clwyd benefit from the work of their companies, groups and friends and inspire the rest of us too.”