Posted on: Friday 7 December 2018
This week, Torfaen Play Service hosted their annual Volunteer Awards evening to celebrate the work of nearly 200 volunteers this year, delivering community play provision across the borough.
In the summer alone 167 volunteers gave up their free time to volunteer on the play schemes across Torfaen, Monmouthshire and Blaenau Gwent.
The prestigious Volunteer of the Year 2018 award went to 17-year-old Cara Davies from Hollybush, Cwmbran. Cara has been volunteering with Torfaen Play Service for the past two years supporting various play projects and events. Whilst attending Cwmbran High School, every morning Cara would deliver an early morning session at Henllys primary school, starting at 7.45am before going on to do her own studies .
Cara said, “I am so happy to have won volunteer of the year, it’s such a privilege as there are so many great volunteers that do some fantastic work in Torfaen and to be recognised for this award and to have the opportunities that have been presented to me are just great, thank you.”
In total this year, volunteers provided 40,480 of volunteering hours which sets a new record and is an excellent example of grassroots youth engagement.
Play Service Manager Julian Davenne, Play Policy Officer Andrea Sysum and volunteer co- host Cara Davies opened the evening with a few speeches and special mentions, followed by a festive vocal performance of songs the ‘The Greatest Showman’, sang by 16-year-old volunteer Freya Bussy.
Julian said, “The awards ceremony allow us to say a huge thank you to all our volunteers. This also includes awards presented to term time volunteers who support the delivery of play clubs, play projects and half term playschemes. I would like to say a huge congratulations to Cara Davies for going above and beyond to offer her services wherever needed, she really is an asset to the team.
Awards were also presented to play apprentices, play helpers and summer volunteers. A short film was shown which included the benefits of volunteering and feedback from many of the volunteers who participate in play projects throughout the year.