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Community heroes recognised with PCC's Pride Awards

Pride-Awards-Group-Shot

PCC Pride Awards - Friday, March 6, 2015

Silent stars from across Avon and Somerset have been presented with Pride Awards in recognition of the contribution they've made to their local community.

Police and Crime Commissioner Sue Mountstevens introduced the awards to recognise unsung heroes who quietly go about making a difference to their community. Nominations come from members of the public and this time award recipients include police officers who rescued a woman who fell into a harbour, a volunteer from Victim Support and someone who has started a playgroup for children in Bridgwater.

Speaking at an awards ceremony for the recipients, PCC Sue Mountstevens said: "Across Avon and Somerset we have some extraordinary people doing extraordinary things for their communities and they do so without any expectation of reward or recognition. These awards are an opportunity for us to say thank you to some of them for what they do. They don't seek our gratitude but I know from previous experience that they are always touched that someone has taken the time to write to me and tell me what a good job they've done.

"All of these people have helped make their communities stronger and touched individual lives. To them all I say thank you, well done and keep up the good work."

The PCC's Pride Awards were presented at a ceremony at police headquarters on Friday, March 6. Awards were presented to the following people:

Claire Parker - Bristol

Pride-Awards-Claire-Parker

 Claire is a community based volunteer for Victim Support in Bristol. She visits victims of crime, providing them with confidential, emotional and practical support. Claire has assisted countless people through a very challenging time in their lives. She is warm and empathetic when supporting victims, but never fails to maintain her professionalism, dealing with some of the most challenging and distressing cases. Claire has supported victims in real crisis, helping them access key services and providing a calm and reliable source of support throughout. She's been described as a 'credit to victim support and the community'.

Claire said: "I was really surprised to be nominated for my community work with Victim Support. Helping victims of crime in the community, providing them with all levels of support is something I want to do regardless of the recognition."

Heather Kale - Bath

 Pride-Awards-Heather-Kale

Heather is a NCT Breastfeeding Counsellor who volunteers to support new mothers and their families. She devotes every Friday to the 'NCT Bumps, Babies and Toddler Group' held at the Percy Community Centre in Bath, where countless new mothers attend for some much needed support, reassurance and information. In addition to this, she uses her specialist skills as a volunteer at the Royal United Hospital. Women in Bath have been able to breastfeed successfully and enjoyably, simply because of Heather's generosity.

Heather said: "This award has come completely out of the blue, it was not expected at all. It's really important that all mothers should be allowed do what they think is right and that they are supported during the early years of their child's life - it's nice that somebody has taken the time to acknowledge what you do."

Tammie Daniels - Bridgwater

 Pride-Awards-Tammie-Daniels

Tammie has shown a huge commitment to the children of the Hamp estate in Bridgwater. Up until last year, there was a distinct lack of activities available for the local children. Since then, Tammie has created a 'play morning' for local children. She secured the location and funding to run these events, with assistance from the Hamp Community Association. In between running these events, Tammie has also taken the time to set up and run toddler and parent mornings in the local church hall. She has asked for nothing in return, apart from seeing local children enjoying themselves.

Tammie said: "I feel highly honoured to be here today receiving this Pride Award. It is nice to be recognised for the work we do in helping our community grow closer together."

Denise Chidgey - Taunton

 Pride-Awards-Denise-Chidgey

Denise Chiedgey, from Taunton, is recognised for her work as part of the Link Centre, which has seen a programme of activities introduced across Halcon Ward, Taunton and which has helped reduce anti-social behaviour during Halloween and Bonfire Night and provided diversionary activities during school holidays. Denise's ongoing hard work and support of these activities has been paramount in ensuring the Link Centre remains at the heart of the local community.

Denise said: "I was shocked, as I didn't even know that I'd been nominated for a PCC Pride Award as it was kept a secret from me. The day has been lovely and I've felt honoured to be given award for what I love to do, support the local community."

Kevin Sturmey - Taunton

 Pride-Awards-Kevin-Sturney

Kevin works tirelessly at Taunton Town FC, putting in many unpaid hours to try and bring the community together through sport. He has worked with local schools and organisations to support putting Taunton, our county town, on the map. His dedication, passion and enthusiasm are second to none, with very little recognition for the effort put in. He has the aim, the goal and the aspiration to really make a difference. Kevin has been described as a 'true asset to the Taunton community'.

Kevin said: "It is very humbling being here today to collect this award and I accept it on behalf of the whole team. There's a real drive in the local community to support one another and what we do we feel adds and benefits this vibrant community."

PC Pete Wilson - South Somerset

 Pride-Awards-Pete-Wilson

Over the past 6 or 7 years, PC Wilson has dedicated himself to delivering the highest standards of Community Speedwatch training to volunteer. His friendly, highly professional and very approachable nature has given South Somerset Community Speedwatch teams well trained, well-motivated and enthusiastic volunteers to operate a highly effective road safety scheme. Outside his training and site survey roles, Pete has always found time to join Community Speedwatch teams at the roadside to give them direct support and conduct enforcement/advisory duties to speeding drivers when appropriate. PC Wilson is certainly an officer that deserves special recognition.

PC Wilson said: "All I do is actively support the volunteers of Community Speedwatch. Community Speedwatch has been going for many years in South Somerset and makes a vital difference in the quality of life in rural communities. Community Speedwatch continues to go from strength to strength thanks to the fantastic volunteers from across Avon and Somerset."

To find out more about getting involved in your local Community Speedwatch visit www.avonandsomerset.police.uk/services/watch-community-schemes/

PC Mark Pollock and PC Hannah King - Bristol

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On Friday January 9th Mark and Hannah were first at the scene of an emergency in Hannover Quay in Bristol where a woman had fallen into the water. In adverse weather, with no daylight and winds of up to 30mph they rapidly recognised the seriousness of the situation and rescued the lady from the water, before carrying out emergency first aid. Their quick thinking and adept actions resulted in the saving of the lady's life and prevented her from sustaining, what could have been, life changing injuries.

On receiving their award they said: "It was a complete surprise, we're just doing what we're here to do really. It's a proud moment. It's nice to see the lady again and see that she's doing well - a lovely occassion for all of us."

The lady who fell into the water on that fateful day wrote a letter of thanks which read 'My sincere thanks and eternal gratitude goes out to your two officers. The Constabulary has two very special people on its team. My best wishes for their continued success.'

PC Michael Wedlock - Bristol

 Pride-Awards-Michael-Wedlock

During his time in Bristol, PC Michael Wedlock has presided over some significant innovations, considerably improving community cohesion in the City. Michael set up a joint steering committee with the local branch of the Royal British Legion to re-introduce a local service of remembrance on Armistice Day. He has also embraced his position as a founding officer on the Senior Citizen Liaison Team by spearheading some truly ground-breaking initiatives, such as the Bedazzled project - working with a school drama group to create and tour a production about distraction burglary. Undoubtedly, the jewel in his crown is the Senior Siren magazine, the mass communication tool of the SCLT. Mike has performed the role of editor of the magazine since its inception (2010). PC Wedlock has been described as being the 'absolute epitome of a modern and dynamic police officer'.

PC Wedlock said: "I was honoured to have been nominated and proud to be a part of the work of so many great volunteers. The team work really hard in helping adults in the local community and I accept this award in their name."

To find out more about the Senior Citizen Liaison Team visit www.sclt.us

PC Kevin Parsons - Bristol

 Pride-Awards-Kevin-Parson

After taking up a temporary position in St Andrews, PC Parsons quickly identified that the problems were located in a relatively small area of the local park. His proposal to fill the area with flower beds surprised many. After securing a grant through the PCC's Community Action Fund, the project went ahead and has proven to be an enormous success. The flower beds have led to a reduction in disturbed nights for local residents, changing the atmosphere of the park in the process. The local residents owe a debt of gratitude to this intelligent, hardworking officer.

PC Parsons said: "I was not expecting the nomination at all. Thank you. I felt it was important to empower the local community and did not expect the positive response that came from what we did."

Nominations for Pride Awards are open all year with award ceremonies held every three months. If you know someone you think deserves a Pride Award then you can nominate them online or download a form to complete. For more information click here.

Posted on Monday 9th March 2015
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