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Ryedale Rural Community Awards 2012
The award winners and sponsors at last year’s first Ryedale Rural Community Awards ceremony at Terrington Village Hall
THE beating heart of a rural community like Ryedale is undoubtedly its community groups, volunteers and local organisations, so it’s once again time to give these hard-working neighbours, friends and colleagues the credit they deserve.
To mark their achievements and celebrate our rural life, the Gazette & Herald, Ryedale Voluntary Action (RVA) and Rural Action Yorkshire (RAY) are joining forces once again to launch the second Ryedale Rural Community Awards.
The aim of the awards is to recognise and reward rural voluntary and community groups in Ryedale for their tremendous efforts in helping to build happier, stronger and more sustainable rural communities.
Last year’s winners proved just how important such groups and individuals are, and there were some very heart-warming stories, from renovating village halls and reviving a community market, to volunteers who plough so much of their time into the communities in which they live.
“We at RVA and RAY work with a large number of rural voluntary and community groups in Ryedale and have seen the impact these groups have in their local communities and the vital services that they provide,” said Sarah Lally-Marley, funding advisor for RVA.
“With many rural areas experiencing problems with loss of local services such as shops, pubs and post offices, it is the hard work and determination of these small voluntary groups that ensures their communities thrive and are sustainable for future generations.”
Sarah Hyde, editor of the Gazette & Herald, said: “During the judging process last year I was so impressed with the hard work and dedication of so many people who drive forward these projects and events.
“These volunteers make a huge difference, helping their community come together to the benefit of all.
“I know we only scratched the surface last year, and am excited to discover more of these selfless souls and share their stories with our readers.”
Sean McClarron, managing director of McClarrons Insurance, one of last year’s sponsors, added: “McClarrons is delighted to be involved in the rural awards for the second year running.
“The rural community is the cornerstone of our business and these awards are a great way of recognising the hard work of many groups across the region. I am sure that the awards will be a huge success.”
This year there are seven awards, all sponsored by local businesses and organisations, many of which sponsored the awards last year. A new sponsor for this year is Ryedale District Council who were very keen to get involved.
Coun Vivienne Knaggs, Ryedale’s champion for older people, said: “Ryedale District Council is delighted to be involved in these awards which do so much to recognise the efforts of local people.
“Many older Ryedale residents are prepared to go that extra mile to help others. These exceptional people bring so much to the communities in which they live and provide the vital support that many of their neighbours rely on.
“These awards go some way towards saying thank you for all that these volunteers do.”
Anyone can enter or nominate someone for an award, outlining how they fit the criteria and why they are so deserving.
The categories are:
Village Hall of the Year, sponsored by Rural Action Yorkshire
How does your hall benefit the local community? Do you hold regular events, training or provide vital services? Have you found a unique way to fund your hall? What makes your hall special or unique?
Rural Community Group of the Year, sponsored by Rural Voice
How do you make a difference to the lives of those in rural areas? Have you provided a service or done something to address a need in your community?
Rural Volunteer of the Year, sponsored by the Gazette & Herald
This award is about encouraging rural groups and communities to nominate someone who they feel has played a vital role in their community through volunteering their time and energy to a particular project, cause or the community in general.
Community Project of the Year under £5,000, sponsored by Ryedale District Council, and Community Project of the Year between £5,000 and £50,000, sponsored by HPE Printers
Whether the project cost £100 or tens of thousands of pounds, the judges are looking for projects that provide real value for money in rural areas and can demonstrate how they have met a need in the community. It is amazing what some groups have been able to achieve with just a few hundred pounds, things which have had a lasting benefit on their community.
“This year, we have changed the small project award to under £5,000 as we wanted to encourage more smaller projects to enter,” said Sarah.
“We are looking for projects that present real value for money to the local community that they serve, whether the project cost £100 or £4,000. It is the benefit to the community that we are interested in.”
This year, there are two new awards.
Youth Sports Club of the Year, sponsored by McClarrons Insurance Ltd, which replaces last year’s Rural Youth Group of the Year
“This is in keeping with this year’s Olympics and the drive to encourage more young people into sport,” said Sarah Lally-Marley.
“There are many fantastic sports clubs in rural areas that are a lifeline to children isolated from activities in towns and we wanted to highlight and celebrate these clubs and the volunteers involved who give their time and expertise to train these young people.”
Rural Community Project for Older People, sponsored by Ryedale District Council
This award is aimed at groups which run projects specifically for older people, helping to reduce rural and social isolation and ensuring that older people can continue to take an active part in community life, whether its a weekly coffee morning that is valued by older people in the community, or ‘silver surfers’ internet clubs.
“We understand that many of our voluntary groups and charities, village halls and so on are reliant on older people to keep things going so ideally projects that are run by older people for older people is what we are looking for,” added Sarah.
The closing date for entries is August 8 with judging taking place on August 15. Finalists will be featured in the Gazette prior to the awards evening, sponsored by Howardian Hills AONB, which takes place at Cropton Village Hall on Friday, September 14. The winners of each award will receive £250 for their organisation from the sponsors.
Entry forms and further information on the criteria for each award are available to download from the RVA website, www.ryedaleva.org.uk
For more information, phone Sarah Lally-Marley or Maggie Farey, Rural Voice network officer, on 01653 600120 or email firstname.lastname@example.org or email@example.com