Cafe volunteer picks up charity’s annual award

Gazette & Herald: Iain Pearson, centre, was presented with his award by trustee Kate Stead and chairman of the trustees, Tony Denness Iain Pearson, centre, was presented with his award by trustee Kate Stead and chairman of the trustees, Tony Denness

VOLUNTEERS and staff at a Ryedale charity were celebrating bagging not one but two major local awards.

Iain Pearson, 27, who has volunteered at Mr Wilf's Cafe in Pickering for the past 18 months since it opened, was awarded with the Service User of the Year award from the Wilf Ward Family Trust at their annual awards ceremony at York Racecourse.

Celebrating the hard work and dedication of volunteers, Iain was praised for his commitment to the cafe and how much he has grown in confidence during his time working there.

Resource manager at the trust, Fiona Strachan said: "He absolutely loves working there and his determination and hard work has led to him getting his qualification in catering and hospitality.

"He has learned to make cakes and soups and he enjoys washing up which has helped his mum at home. He is extremely independent and could run the cafe on his own.

"We think he is a star and he has done fantastically well."

The skills Iain has picked up from working at the cafe have helped him to secure a position as a catering assistant at Lady Lumley’s school one day a week.

The trust, which provides social care services for people with learning and physical disabilities, also celebrated another win. Vivis House, in Pickering was awarded the Community Garden of The Year title by the Pickering in Bloom Judges.

Fiona said that the award was a tribute to the hard work the volunteers put in to maintain the garden.

"The garden is maintained by trainees who work at Mr Wilf's and we have other volunteers and a gardener as well, it's a real team effort to keep it looking as fantastic as it does now.

"We are really grateful to all those who contribute."

Vivis House is home to the community cafe and is also used as a resource centre.

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