Friends, colleagues and families of volunteers in the Broads are being urged to nominate them for the annual National Parks Volunteer Awards.
The National Parks UK Awards are a way of thanking volunteers for the thousands of hours of service they offer up each year to help make the National Parks some of Britain’s most treasured landscapes.
They are being accepted in four categories – Individual, Young Person, Group, and Project – and last year the Nancy Oldfield Trust became the first winner in the Broads after taking the Group award.
Now Broads Authority Volunteer Co-ordinator Beth Williams is appealing for more Broads nominations in 2015 to ensure last year was not isolated.
She stressed that nominees do not have to be volunteering for the Broads Authority. All that's required is that the volunteer service or project to take place within the Broads.
“Volunteers are the lifeblood of the Broads and they deserve national recognition so if you know an individual or group who dedicates their own time and energy to this unique and beautiful landscape please do put them forward whether they volunteer for the Authority or not.”
The Group and project winners will receive a £1,000 bursary toward future volunteering efforts. The individual and young person winners will receive outdoor gear. Nominations are being accepted until midnight 20 September 2015.
"The Volunteer Awards are among our favourite projects of the year," said National Parks UK Director Kathryn Cook. "We love the awards because they serve as an opportunity to celebrate all the amazing and inspirational work taking place across the 15 National Parks."
The awards recognise the hard work of volunteers deemed to have gone above and beyond the usual expectations of volunteer service.
In addition to the Nancy Oldfield Trust, which provides holidays in the Broads for disadvantaged people involving activities such as sailing, bird-watching and environmental studies, past award recipients include a young man who travelled by bus and sometimes skateboard to attend volunteer events, a fascinating project to "heal" the damage caused by wildfire with wool, and an inspiring individual who found volunteering helps ease the challenges caused by mental health issues.
To nominate a deserving individual, young person, group, or project, visit www.nationalparks.gov.uk.
More information on the awards, including FAQs and terms and conditions can also be found at the same website.
A short list of nominees will be released in late October and the winners of the 2015 National Parks Volunteer Awards will be announced in November.
To find out more about all the work that volunteers do in the Broads, as well as how to volunteer yourself, visit our volunteering page.