The Mayor's Volunteer Awards

Brianna Middleton-MacPherson

Every year volunteers across Reigate and Banstead are celebrated and thanked for their contribution to their local communities at the Mayor’s Volunteer Awards. The awards seek to celebrate the role of the voluntary sector in serving the borough and its residents. They reward those who volunteer their time and show commitment. At The Children’s Trust we are lucky to have over 500 volunteers, who dedicate over 100,000 hours of their time to support children with brain injury each year, and it is a true testament to our volunteers that not only one, but four volunteers were recognised at the Mayor’s Awards Ceremony that took place on the 7th of July 2017. Congratulations to Diane Graham, Jenny Gunning, Geoff & Jenny Smith for their recognition and thank you for your continued support! Diane Graham The Mayor's wife, Mary, The Mayor of Reigate and Banstead and Diane at the awards Diane has been a dedicated volunteer for The Children’s Trust since the 1990’s. Now a community ambassador she goes above and beyond not only helping the community team but also teams across the fundraising department and volunteer department. Helping out at our events is a top priority for her and it is rare that she is unable to make any. She doesn’t live locally but always goes out of her way to travel down to us for local events sometimes at last minute. As she has a personal connection with The Children’s Trust she portrays great courage when presenting her story which is always incredibly engaging and moving. We are always so incredibly proud to have such a strong, inspirational and always optimistic ambassador to represent us. Jenny Gunning The Mayor's wife, Mary, The Mayor of Reigate and Banstead and Jenny at the awards Jenny has volunteered for The Children's Trust for 12 years working usually one day a week for the Events Team. Jenny attends all of our offsite events and promotional events for The Supercar Event - which this year raised over £109,000! Leading up to Supercar, Jenny works for about 4 weeks straight and is onsite all weekend at the event helping with the setup, managing the Information Point and helping with the derig. The Supercar Event is The Children’s Trust largest bespoke event, the venue is an open space with no infrastructure so everything people see onsite has to be bought into the venue. Jenny is responsible for all the printed documents which is no mean feat. This involves the printing of thousands of tickets, disclaimers, volunteer documents and signage etc. It’s a military operation taking several months to collate.  Jenny is very much an integral part of the Events Team and has supported The Children’s Trust for many years now. Geoff & Jenny Smith Geoff Smith, The Mayor's wife Mary, The Mayor of Reigate and Banstead and Jenny Smith at the awards Geoff & Jenny have been volunteers at The Children’s Trust since 2005, following the sudden passing of their daughter who had previously worked here. Geoff is the charities official mascot while Jenny is his ears and eyes. They visit the children, putting a smile on their faces and have set up annual mascot races across the UK. They’ve raised over £75,000, recruited over 300 mascot friends and continued to be so passionate and dedicated volunteers. Their story is inspirational and they thoroughly deserve recognition.