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Voluntary Action Shetland

Shetland Youth Volunteering Awards 2014

SYVA 2014 group photo

Photo: Dave Donaldson

The fifth annual Shetland Youth Volunteer Awards took place on the evening of Monday 10th November at a civic reception hosted by Malcolm Bell, Convenor of Shetland Islands Council in the Lerwick Town Hall. The event was attended by over 100 nominees, nominators and guests. The 3 awards were, once again, sponsored by Voluntary Action Shetland, The Rotary Club of Shetland and BP Sullom Voe.

This year’s event was held to coincide with the annual Community Service Volunteers (CSV) ‘Make a Difference’ campaign. Once again the local organising committee were delighted to announce another record breaking year with 8 nominations in the organisation’s category, 14 nominations in the “One Team” (groups) category and 14 nominations in the individual volunteer’s category.

Opening the ceremony (to accompany a finger buffet), were young band “Blind Summit”. Event compère for the evening, Radio Shetland’s Jane Moncrieff’s first job was to introduce Shetland MSP Tavish Scott to open the awards, and he started by paying homage to Remembrance Day. He then mentioned that Shetland continues to lead the way in Scotland with regards to people volunteering in their community with over 28% of current high school role across Shetland registered for Saltire (youth volunteer awards), a number which has risen by 5% every year since they were introduced. Regardless of the outcome on the evening, He said that every nominee was a winner in the eyes of our community.

Following a brief video message from Shetland MP Alistair Carmichael congratulating all participants at this year awards, the nominees were issued with a certificate. A representative from the winner of last year’s organisation award, Lynn Tulloch (of Shetland Befriending Scheme), presented the certificates.

Chris Wright, winner of the 2012 SYVA volunteer category and a member of the judging panel, gave feedback on the quality of the nominations.

Alec Miller (chairman of Voluntary Action Shetland) presented the 3 finalists in the organisation category: Cunningsburgh and District Agricultural Society, Disability Shetland and Transition Turrifield, with their certificates. Disability Shetland emerged as the overall winner of this year’s organisation award.

The “One Team” group of volunteers’ category was presented by Mark Kelso (BP Sullom Voe). Certificates were issues to the 4 shortlisted candidates: Anderson High School Young Ambassadors, Memory Lane Cafe and RVS Volunteers from Sandwick School, Scalloway Youth Cafe Volunteers and Shetland Amateur Competitive Swimming Team, with Scalloway Youth Cafe Volunteers announced as the winner of the SYVA “One Team” award.

Andrew Archer, chairperson of the Rotary Club of Shetland, presented certificates to the short-listed individual volunteers: Amie Beswick, Daniel Mainland and Liam Brannan; Liam Brannan, a volunteer with South Mainland Youth Clubs, Disability Shetland, Cunningsburgh Show and Shetland Young Promoters group, was announced as winner of this year’s Individual award. Liam gave a short speech and said he was thankful to the nominators who put his name forward and to all of the organisations who had provided him with the opportunity to volunteer.

SIC Convenor Malcolm Bell closed the ceremony, saying: it is a sign of a healthy community that we have such a diverse range of groups offering volunteering placements’. He thanked VAS, BP Sullom Voe and The Rotary Club for planning the event and the external event sponsors Hunter and Morrison, the catering staff and Blind Summit for the music, the nominators and especially the young volunteers themselves for all that they have done for their community. He ended by saying: ‘volunteers are not paid, not because they are worthless, but because they are priceless’.

Shetland Youth Volunteering Development Worker, Neil Pearson said “I am delighted that the event has once again been so successful, everyone who has won or who has been nominated demonstrates the immensely strong community and youth volunteering spirit that exists here in Shetland, a community of which I am very proud to be a part.” Mr Pearson finally thanked Shetland Islands Council and Convenor Bell for hosting the civic reception and Jane Moncrieff for agreeing to compère the ceremony

For more information on the Shetland Youth Volunteering Awards, and on volunteering for young people, please contact:

Neil Pearson, Youth Volunteering Development Worker: Neil.Pearson@shetland.org 01595 743911

Voluntary Action Shetland
Market House
14 Market Street


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