14th November 2023 | Lieutenancy News

Two Surrey volunteer groups honoured with the first King’s Award for Voluntary Service 2023.

The volunteers from two Surrey groups, who dedicate their valuable time and experience to help individuals and communities across this county, have been rewarded with the prestigious 2023 King’s Award for Voluntary Service (KAVS) announced on 14th November. This is the highest award a local voluntary group can receive in the UK and is equivalent to an MBE.

Welcoming the announcement, HM Lord-Lieutenant of Surrey, Michael More-Molyneux, congratulated the winning groups and highlighted the outstanding contribution made by these volunteers, who this year represent all ages, ethnicities and diversity across our local communities. The two groups are among the 262 local charities, social enterprises and voluntary groups to receive the prestigious award this year. Their work, along with others from across the UK, reminds us of all the ways in which fantastic volunteers are contributing to their local communities and working to make life better for those around them.

The Lord-Lieutenant commented: “The work that these groups do for the benefit of their local community or across this county is quite outstanding.  And across both groups, if it were not for the volunteers’ tireless work and commitment – and the dedication to the good of others which they represent – the services they provide would not happen. I am delighted that these extraordinary contributions to the welfare of the people of Surrey have been recognised nationally.” 

The volunteer groups honoured with the 2023 King’s Award for Voluntary Service are from:

Guildford Archery Club provides social and competitive archery for people of all ages, 365 days a year. We aim is to be as open and friendly to beginners and

recreational archers as we are to serious competitors. Shooting takes place outdoors in the summer and indoors in the winter.

Surrey Heath Age concern CIO

A Visiting & Befriending service matching volunteers with isolated older persons, The Rainbow Cafe, a warm, inclusive community cafe in Camberley for older people. Weekly Tea & Memories vintage tea parties, held at the Cafe, for older people living alone and monthly Tea & Chatter afternoon teas hosted by volunteers

The Award itself – a certificate signed by the King and a domed crystal – will be presented to each winning group over the coming months by Surrey’s Lord-Lieutenant or a representative Deputy Lieutenant, on behalf of HM The King.

In addition, two volunteers from each group will attend a garden party at Buckingham Palace in 2024, along with other national recipients of this year’s Award.

The Vice Lord-Lieutenant of Surrey, Sir Stephen Lamport, chairs the county’s KAVS Local Panel, which is made-up of experienced assessors. They interviewed every nominated group remotely between October and December 2022 before sending their findings to the National Award Committee, which makes the final recommendations to the Cabinet Office and ultimately to HM The King.

Following the announcement of this year’s winners, Sir Stephen extended an invitation to Surrey residents to nominate groups of deserving volunteers for The King’s Awards for Voluntary Service 2024. Full details of how to proceed and a nomination form will be available online from 1 June 2024 at: https://kavs.dcms.gov.uk/

Please also see the attached pdf of the KAVS leaflet produced exclusively by the Surrey Lieutenancy for more information on how to nominate.

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