Queen’s Award for Voluntary Service

Estuary is awarded the MBE for volunteer groups on its 30th anniversary

Estuary has been recognised for its outstanding work in the community as a 2017 recipient of the Queen’s Award for Voluntary Service (QAVS).

The Queen’s Award for Voluntary Service the highest Award given to volunteer groups in the UK.  It was created by The Queen in 2002 to mark the occasion of her Golden Jubilee, recognising excellence in voluntary activities carried out by groups in the community.  Estuary was selected by an independent Assessment Committee chaired by Sir Martyn Lewis CBE.

Estuary’s Chief Executive, Rachel Gilpin, was accompanied by Estuary Volunteer, Paddy Taylor, to Her Majesty’s Garden Party at Buckingham Palace in May. Rachel and Sue Wilkinson, Estuary Trustee, were presented with the Award in October.

Since being founded by volunteers in 1987, Estuary has supported local people of all ages and from all walks of life to volunteer.  Volunteer roles include transporting frail service users to and from health appointments; befriending service users attending Estuary’s Day Centre, Lunch Club and Friendship Groups; helping out at Estuary’s annual Christmas Day Lunch; fundraising and office based volunteering.

To find out more about volunteering for The Estuary League of Friends, contact the team on 01392 879009.

Chief Executive, Rachel Gilpin said:

“We are delighted to learn that Estuary has been awarded The Queen’s Award for Voluntary Service on our thirtieth anniversary. 

“We are incredibly proud of the 160 local people who volunteer their time to make a difference and without whom our work would not be possible. The Award is testament to their commitment and dedication.

“There are dozens of volunteer roles with Estuary and once we open the Community Hub in Topsham next summer, many new opportunities will become available.” 

Chairman, Dr Kate Hattersley said:

“This Award is a tremendous achievement which recognises the excellent work of Estuary and its life force of dedicated volunteers from the local community.   The Board of Trustees are immensely proud of the recognition that this Award represents.”

Paddy Taylor, Volunteer Driver for Estuary

It is a great honour and privilege to represent Estuary’s volunteers at The Queen’s Garden Party in recognition of the Award.

“It is just so rewarding helping other people and I’ve made so many new friends through Estuary, and of course, who knows if one day I might need Estuary’s help myself.”