All communities have hidden treasures – and no, I don’t mean stashes of gold ingots buried under your allotment! The real treasures of any community are the people who live there, and especially those who through love, dedication, and gratitude give something back to their local area. It may be a seemingly small thing, and they may not shout about it, but the quiet, kind actions of local people are often the lifeblood of a community’s success. And it is these people that The Pride of Andover Awards are now seeking out as the 2012 nominations open.
Originally launched by the Andover Advertiser in 2007, for five years The Pride of Andover Awards have given Andover residents an annual opportunity to put forward people they know who have gone the extra mile for their community. Now in their sixth year, the Awards continue to encourage local people to express their gratitude for deserving friends, neighbours, and loved ones whose contributions might otherwise go unrecognised.
As stated on their website, the Awards aim to “honour people who are quietly keeping the heart of our community beating. Past winners have been extraordinary people who have demonstrated a love for others so strong that it has made a real difference to other people’s lives.” This year, the theme of the Awards is the Diamond Jubilee.
Supported by Andover Vision and Test Valley Borough Council, The Pride of Andover Awards cover a host of different areas, such as the Carer’s Award, the Contribution to the Arts Award, the Outstanding Volunteer Award, and the Young Person’s Award, amongst many more. Chosen from amongst scores of nominees, the award winners will receive their prizes at a celebratory ceremony at The Lights Theatre on Tuesday 9th October. Sponsored by Stannah, The Breeze Andover, the Andover Advertiser, and Simplyhealth, the awards will be presented by television personality Esther Rantzen and The Breeze’s Steve Randall.
Nominations can be made via an online form at the Awards website. Paper forms will also be available over the coming weeks from The Lights Theatre and the Andover Advertiser offices – so keep your eyes peeled for those!
Last year’s winners included David Windeband for the Long Term Commitment Award. Having started volunteering for the British Heart Foundation 17 years ago, David is now Vice Chairman of the committee for the charity’s Andover and District branch and has helped to raise £230,000 in that time. The 2011 Citizenship Award went to volunteer rugby coach Charles Grey, for his support of the Andover Rugby Club over 14 seasons. The volunteers and leaders of Fusion Youth Group were also jointly presented with the Andover Vision Special Award, for their work with the fantastic charity providing essential support, friendship, and guidance for youngsters in the Andover area.
Whether or not you’re an Andover local, HugoFox News would also love to hear stories about the so-far unsung heroes in your community. In fact, we will soon be running a brand new feature about such local treasures, letting our readers know about the dedicated, kind, and fascinating people who are all around us but so often go unnoticed by the wider world.
If you know someone whose story you think should be heard, don’t hesitate to get in touch with Jess at firstname.lastname@example.org or else leave us a comment right here at HugoFox News!