Having applied earlier this year, we were delighted to be selected as as a finalist and were invited to attend the awards ceremony at the Millenium Gloucester Hotel on 26th September.
It was both a surprise and an honour to be chosen as the overall Winner from a shortlist of five contenders in the Best Charity or Social Enterprise category.
The awards are the brainchild of the Royal Borough of Kensington and Chelsea Chamber of Commerce, of which the Friends became a member this year, and are the Chamber's way of "celebrating the borough's hard working and innovative businesses."
This prestigious award recognises the magnificent contribution of the Friends to the hospital and the significant benefits that we bring to our community. Not only is it an accolade but it offers us the opportunity to reach out to businesses in the borough to highlight what we do, why we do it and what we bring to the community. We should all be very proud. This award is for you. Our wonderful, modest, hard working, dedicated volunteers. We would be nothing without you.
Yes, we know it's early days but the countdown to Christmas has begun. We know that because the Christmas card delivery has arrived.. And when it does, it's all hands on deck, sending us all into a tailspin wondering where on earth we're going to store them. Yet every year, they sell out and every year, we're asked why there aren't more of them. So fingers crossed for a sell out this year, with even more cards for you to choose from.
All cards are in packs of 10 and are on sale NOW in The Shop for £4.50 per pack. They're all different sizes so you need to see them to see them to get the measure of them but see below for our six little beauties.
Winning the Queen's Award for Voluntary Service was one thing. Being presented with it by the Lord Lieutenant was quite another. Buoyed by having Ex-President, June Torrance, Ex-Chair Marie Stacey and Vice Chair, Susie Blackwood, behind her, current Co-Chair, Emma Rogers accepted the honour on behalf of all the Friends.
It was a huge moment and we were humbled to be in such good company. Massive congratulations to all the other award winners who each had an amazing story to tell and were truly worthy recipients. For all who were in attendance, the overarching common thread was community and the sense that small acts of kindness really can make an enormous difference. Amen to that.
Pictured below is Co-Chair, Emma Rogers receiving the award from the Lord Lieutenant of Greater London, Sir Kenneth Olisa, OBE.
Hold the front page. In acknowledgement of our receiving the QAVS, the Friends are featuring BIG TIME on the Digital Screens throughout the hospital. Check them out. Twelve individual slides rotating steadily around the loop in celebration of our achievement and contribution to the hospital.
It might not be much but at least we're getting some airtime and that, coupled with your incredible dedication and support, goes a long way towards getting our 'Helping Caring Giving' message out there. Thank you. For everything.