2020 COUNTY LONDONDERRY RECIPIENTS OF THE QAVS
The highest award given in the UK to Voluntary groups
Eglinton Community Ltd, a group of volunteers based in the village of Eglinton, have been honoured with the Queen’s Award for Voluntary Service, the highest award a voluntary group can receive in the UK.
For 22 years this group of around 50 volunteers has been contributing much to benefit their village and community. While their establishment of a Community Centre as a hub for all the community has been pivotal in their efforts, volunteers, of all ages, have sought ways to enhance and enrich the lives of all sections of their community from social care, to heritage projects and recreation and lobbying to improve rural transport. A light was focused on their group during and after the floods of 2017 which saw many houses in the village destroyed. Their extraordinary response in aiding and supporting local people at the time and during the following months very much impressed the nomination assessment panels. Following the floods the group received a citation from Her Majesty The Queen and a visit of support from HRH The Prince of Wales.
The Garvagh Clydesdale & Vintage Vehicle Club, a group of volunteers based in Garvagh, County Londonderry, have also been honoured with the Queen’s Award for Voluntary Service.
The Club has been preserving history in vintage vehicles, machinery and farming methods, including Clydesdale horses, for 25 years. They have been achieving this by holding one of the largest shows of its kind annually, as well as hosting vintage ploughing matches and many other pursuits involving their passion for horsepower of both the mechanical and four legged type. The annual show and colourful parade is a major local attraction. They bring enjoyment to many through their annual show, ploughing matches and get together’s. All work is done by volunteers of all ages and through all their endeavours they have also raised many hundreds of 100’s of thousands of pounds for local medical and other charities.
The Maghera Cross Community Link provides a place for children and young adults from both sides of the community to come together and interact meaningfully in a safe neutral environment. It provides tutoring, counselling, confidence building and life and career skills development.
The Link has, since its inception 5 years ago, worked with only a small number of volunteers and a few staff to provide social and personal development for disadvantaged children and young adults. Every week over 120 children and young people from across the community attend The Link and many families are helped by the food bank. The work The Link does is unique and essential to the area and encourages youngsters to improve their life chances and sense of worth.