Community groups from across the County honoured at this year’s Foundation awards
Winners were announced at the Northamptonshire Community Foundation’s Annual Awards evening on 14 November. Held at Northampton’s Derngate Theatre for the first time, the evening was generously sponsored by University of Northampton and Rathbones Investment.
Twenty five groups from across Kettering, Corby, Daventry and Northampton were up for an award across six categories, Best Newcomer, Trailblazer, Brilliant Group, Edge, Lifetime Achievement, and the High Sheriff Initiative.
In memory of late Lady Juliet Townsend, past Patron of Northamptonshire Community Foundation, Lady Juliet’s eldest daughter Eleanor Bland presented a special award for volunteering. The nominations highlighted the outstanding commitment, passion and energy given by the volunteers and their value to the community groups they support. The winner of this award Arthur Daly has been a volunteer at Kings Heath Boxing Club for over 30 years. Anjona Roy and Mustafa El-Bayati were highly commended for the award for their valued work within the community.
The Foundation announced the winners of its Capture your Community photography competition, the Foundation asked the people of Northamptonshire to enter a photograph that they believe represents their community in Northamptonshire. With a fantastic response and over 100 entries, the winner of the Judges’ Choice Award was Matthew Toresen with his photo of the Northampton Woolly Crew. The winner of the People’s Choice Award was also revealed, this award was open to the public on Northamptonshire Community Foundation’s Facebook page to choose their People’s Choice Winner out of a selection of photo entries from the competition. Emma Brennan’s photograph was crowned the People’s Choice Winner with her photo receiving a total of 185 likes.
Last year’s Lifetime Achievement Award winner, Sikh Community Centre and Youth Club opened the ceremony with their Dhol Drumming performance.The comperes for the evening were Chief Executive Victoria Miles DL and Trustee of the Foundation and BBC Radio Northampton presenter John Griff. Winners took to the stage, including a group that teaches the art of Breakdance in schools, a counselling service for young people, a group that helps the elderly and vulnerable stay safe within their own homes, a women’s development group promoting peace, respect and understanding between different faiths and a Football community group delivering sports and education programmes to local communities.
During a short interlude from the awards, John Griff presented a Q and A session with the County’s emerging sports stars, who have all been supported through the Northamptonshire Champions Fund. The talented Gretton Silver Band, who received funding from the Foundation earlier this year, brought the evening to a close.
Victoria Miles DL, Chief Executive of Northamptonshire Community Foundation said “I am absolutely delighted at the amazing turnout we had for our Annual Awards night to help celebrate a range of inspiring community heroes. It is a tribute to the groups we fund on behalf of our generous donors that the voluntary sector during difficult and stretched times are getting on with the job of supporting the most vulnerable in our communities and making Northamptonshire a better place to live.”
Judges included Martin Sutherland of Royal and Derngate, Dr Deborah Mattock of the University of Northampton, Pindy Chahal of Sikh Community Centre and Youth Club, Paul Parsons, Trustee of Northamptonshire Community Foundation, David Summers of Johnston Press Home Counties, Paul Mills of Screen Northants and Hassan Shah of SP Law.
Award Winners (Photographs courtesy of Leila Corker)
Best Newcomer Award sponsored by Stanair
Winner: Old to tha New Productions
Old to tha New Productions work with people of all backgrounds and ages to show the positive influence of hip-hop and its importance in history.
Trailblazer Award sponsored by Bambino Mio
Winner: Care and Repair Northamptonshire Ltd
Care and Repair provide a range of practical services designed to support older, disabled and vulnerable people enabling them to continue to live safe, warm and secure within their own homes.
Brilliant Group Award sponsored by Novacroft
Winner: Pearls of Peace
Pearls of Peace is a women’s development group, set up by a group of dedicated Muslim women whose main aim is to ‘promote peace, respect and understanding’ between different faiths, backgrounds and cultures.
Edge Award sponsored by Wilson Browne Solicitors
Time2Talk provides a free counselling service for young people aged 13 to 25 in Daventry and Towcester.
Lifetime Achievement Award sponsored by Gorell Barnes
Winner: Northampton Town Football in the Community
Northampton Town Football in the Community delivers innovative and creative sports and education programmes to all local communities, particularly those who are disadvantaged.
High Sheriff Initiative Award
Winner: The Good Loaf CIC
Based in Northampton, The Good Loaf is an artisan bakery which carries out activities benefiting the community and provides employment and training opportunities to ex-offenders and other disadvantaged groups.
The Lady Juliet Townsend Award for Volunteering
Winner: Arthur Daly, a volunteer coach at Kings Heath Boxing Club
Capture your Community The Judges’ Choice Award Sponsored by Northamptonshire. Britain’s Best Surprise
Winner: Matthew Toresen
Capture your Community The People’s Choice Award Sponsored by Technique Print Group
Winner: Emma Brennan