Over the past four years Kids Club have been priveliged to have Andrew Donnelly as a key volunteer. Throughout this time Andrew has worked extremely hard supporting the club and inspiring the children.
Andrew has been a volunteer at Kids Club since he was 14 years old, initially promoting activities and assisting with younger children.
Andrew is generally the heartbeat of the club. Over the last 2 years he has organised discos, birthday parties and held a fund raising event for the club. Andrew has established a ‘Junior Reporters’ group that produces a quarterly newsletter, providing readers with news articles about the club and recently launched our cinema club.
He is also a keen police cadet, becoming a leader later this year. To this end he has been nominated for several awards for his hard work which are outlined below:
Durham Community Action – Young Volunteer of the Year
Each year, the County Durham Volunteering Awards recognise and celebrate the fantastic work done by volunteers across County Durham.
In 2015, over 100 nominations were received across the categories of Children and Young People, Greener, Healthier, Safer, and Wealthier. In addition to the five categories, the awards also celebrated the County Durham Young Volunteer of the Year, and the Group of the Year.
The evening is organised by Durham Community Action to recognise volunteers who give up their time, without financial reward to improve the lives of others and attracted nominations of more than 100 volunteers.
Young Volunteer of the Year
Andrew, receiving his award from Councillor Jan Blakey, Chair of Durham County Council, during the celebration dinner held at Hardwick Hall, near Sedgefield on 21 October 2015.
Seventeen-year-old Andrew said he was ‘over the moon’ to be named as Young Volunteer of the Year.
He has been a volunteer at Kids Club in his village since he was 14 years old, initially promoting activities and assisting with younger children.
Over the last two years he has organised discos, birthday parties and held a fund raising event for the club.
Andrew’s volunteering has made a massive difference in the community. His continued enthusiasm has helped to increase membership, and improved the relationship between the local community and young people in the area. Andrew is a positive role model for all young people to follow with a genuine desire to help the community.
Inspiring Youth Award
National Neighbourhood & Home Watch Awards 2014
Andrew Donnelly who is believed to be the youngest Neighbourhood Watch Coordinator in the country receiving a highly commended Inspiring Youth Award on behalf of Kids Club at the National Awards Ceremony in London.
Andrew, who is about to start a horticulture apprenticeship at East Durham College, attended the awards with relatives and supporters.
He said: “It was really good.
“I enjoy what I do. It’s fun and I enjoy seeing the progress the kids make through me helping them.”
John Booth, chair of Ushaw Moor Kids’ Club, said: “Andrew does a tremendous job delivering timely personal and Internet safety information to help children from harm.
“Kids’ Club is very proud of Andrew’s achievement and extremely lucky to have such a dedicated young man as a volunteer.”
Michael Banks, deputy chief constable of Durham Police and the Association of Chief Police Officer’s lead for citizens in policing, said: “Neighbourhood Watch volunteers play a vital part in keeping communities safe and reducing crime.
“Police colleagues up and down the country are delighted to work with residents to make their areas safe and nice places to live and really appreciate the hard work that people put in.”
We are all delighted at Kids Club that one of our junior volunteers has been presented with a Shrievalty Award by the High Sheriff at a ceremony in Durham Castle. The award is given to recognise courageous, selfless and community-spirited actions of young people.
Since Kids Club started a year ago Andrew has given many hours of his time supporting the children and adult members both inside and out of club meeting times, helping to make the club the success it is today.
He displays responsibility far beyond his years and is one of the most reliable volunteers the club has. As the junior rep on the club committee he has become the voice of our younger members ensuring ideas are fresh in offering a positive contribution helping to shaping the development of the club.
It is heartening when youngsters give their time responsibly for the common good and ask for nothing in return. It gives us all at Kids Club great pleasure to congratulate Andrew, a true community role model on receiving this prestigious award.