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Luen’s blog: It’s award season!

In case you hadn’t noticed, it’s award season. We’ve had the Brits and BAFTAs and the Oscars are on their way. Awards are a great way of showcasing what you do really well, giving credit and thanking people for their contribution. It’s interesting to see that the King and Queen Consort are also incorporating ways to ensure more unsung community heroes are recognised for their work at the time of the Coronation.

Here at Forget Me Not, we’ve won two very prestigious awards over the last 12 months: for our unique and pioneering service supporting families whose child has died suddenly and unexpectedly, and for our work supporting the wellbeing of our staff. We are very, very proud of these!

But it’s important that Forget Me Not also recognises and rewards contributions from staff, volunteers and supporters. 

I write a message of thanks to every member of staff when they complete 1, 3, 5 and 10 years of service. The note comes with a badge which we know people wear with pride. We do the same for our volunteers. And also every year, we arrange volunteer tea parties in each of our shops so that we can thank the wonderful people who kindly give up their time to keep the tills ringing. I have been to several of these recently, and it’s lovely to meet people, understand why they choose to volunteer for us and say a very big thank you. For those volunteers who work in the hospice and with our fundraising teams, we run events at Russell House to recognise and celebrate their commitment and hard work.

Sometimes, we have the opportunity to nominate people for special awards. Like Brenda who recently received a commendation certificate from the High Sheriff for her many years of service as a trustee and volunteer fundraiser. 

Right now four of our supporters are nominated for a Yorkshire Choice award. These are:

  • Susan Mountain – nominated for both the inspirational individual of the year award and the Kate Granger Award for Outstanding Contribution. Susan’s daughter Maci received care from the hospice at the end of her life a few years ago. Since then, Susan and her family have gone on to raise over £100,000 for Forget Me Not as a way of saying thank you and ensuring others get the care their daughter had.
  • Team Sheila – nominated in the local fundraiser of the year award. Team Sheila are two ladies, both called Sheila, who have been fundraising for Forget Me Not for more than 10 years, raising over £50,000. They run raffles, tombolas and stalls, they make things to sell and just turn up at every opportunity to make some money for the charity. They are brilliant ambassadors for what we do and are just lovely to work with.
  • Ossett Brewery – nominated in the charitable business of the year category. As long-term partners, Ossett Brewery has been a brilliant supporter, running family fun days, on pack promotions on their beers and sponsorship offers around events. This all helps raise awareness and vital funds (some £52,000!), for which we are very grateful.
  • Trinity Walk Shopping Centre in Wakefield – nominated as charitable business of the year. Trinity Walk is also a long-term partner of Forget Me Not raising over £31,000 from Santa’s grottos and other fun events. Perhaps you saw the Dr Who or Star Wars themed events – a great example of putting the “fun” into fundraising!
These awards are voted for by the public, so if you want to help to ensure our candidates are fully recognised for all that they do, you can vote for them here.

Thanks for helping us to recognise the brilliant contributions that so many people make to our charity. We couldn’t do what we do without them or you.