Helpforce Champions Awards 2019

When it comes to volunteers in the NHS “Thank you” doesn’t even begin to cover it. Which is why we want to shout from the rooftops about the amazing work volunteers in our NHS do every single day. The Helpforce Champions Awards, kindly sponsored by Deloitte and supported by NHS England, are your opportunity to celebrate and share the invaluable contributions made by volunteers across the UK.

With your help, we can shine a light on those dedicated and caring individuals who give their time and talents to help staff and support patients, families and carers.

Finalists announcement

This year, we have received record number of nominations and each entry truly deserves to win for all the excellent work that individuals and teams have put in to support patients and NHS staff through the power of volunteering. We are delighted to present here 24 finalists. Good luck to all of them and the winners will be announced in October.

Outstanding Volunteering Team of the Year:

  • Aintree University Hospital NHS FT – Volunteer End of Life Companions Team
  • North Tees and Hartlepool NHS Foundation Trust – Volunteer Drivers
  • The Anne Robson Trust – The Butterfly Volunteer Team

Young Volunteer of the Year:

  • Royal Cornwall Hospitals NHS Trust – Maisy Vincent
  • Chelsea and Westminster Hospital NHS Foundation Trust – Salma Abdi
  • Cardiff and Vale University Health Board – Ethan Prosser

Volunteer of the Year:

  • Royal Liverpool & Broadgreen University Hospital NHS Trust – Gary Thomas
  • Camden & Islington NHS Foundation Trust – Dean Moriarty
  • Buckinghamshire Healthcare NHS Trust – Trevor Hudson

Outstanding Staff Champion for Volunteers:

  • Oxford Health NHS Foundation Trust – Mandy McKendry
  • Royal Berkshire NHS Foundation Trust – Melanie Gager
  • Western Health and Social Care Trust, N. Ireland – Sister Nichola Cairns

Volunteer Leader of the Year:

  • North West Anglia NHS Foundation Trust – Barry Pridmore
  • Royal Cornwall Hospitals NHS Trust – Patzy Dalby
  • North Tees and Hartlepool NHS Foundation Trust – Paul Wharton

Partnership working in volunteering:

  • Northumbria Healthcare NHS Foundation Trust – Healing Arts Volunteers
  • South Tees NHS Foundation Trust – Therapeutic care Psychology module
  • South Central Ambulance Service NHS Foundation Trust – Community Engagement Team

Innovation in Volunteering Award:

  • Birmingham Women’s and Children’s Hospital NHS Foundation Trust – Volunteers team
  • Royal Cornwall Hospitals NHS Trust – John Nunn
  • Isle of Wight NHS Trust – Cathy Armstrong

Celebrating inclusion and diversity in volunteering:

  • South Tees NHS Foundation Trust – Therapeutic care Supported volunteers
  • Cardiff and Vale University Health Board – Library Trolley Service Volunteers
  • Western Health and Social Care Trust, N. Ireland – Niall Millar

Thank you to our generous sponsors for making this possible

Award Categories:

Our Helpforce Champions Awards recognise volunteers in eight categories to find examples of people trying something new, bringing about positive change and setting new levels of excellence.

Outstanding Volunteering Team of the Year

This award recognises excellent teamwork and combined contribution by three or more volunteers working together. If you know a dynamic team who prove that more hands are better than one, tell us about their outstanding teamwork. The group may have worked on an event or project, and have achieved significant success as a team.

Click here to see last year’s winner.

Young Volunteer of the Year

This award celebrates the contribution young people can make to staff and patients, and the value they bring. We are looking for examples of young volunteers who are leading the way for their generation. The ones who have made a big difference in the lives of the people they are supporting as well as to their own lives.

Click here to see last year’s winner.

Volunteer of the Year

This award celebrates a truly exceptional individual who has gone above and beyond expectations in their volunteering role during the year. Tell us about a volunteer whose dedication, thoughtfulness, energy and care have made a lasting impact on the experience of staff, patients, or both.

We are very grateful to Room to Reward for sponsoring this category.

Click here to see last year’s winner.

Outstanding Staff Champion for Volunteers

This award goes to a supportive member of NHS staff (outside of volunteer management), who has championed and embraced volunteers, and gone the extra mile to recognise the positive impact volunteers can make. We would like to see examples of those that have supported volunteers in their service area, community, influenced others, opened doors and supported integration, creating a positive volunteering environment.

Click here to see last year’s winner.

Volunteer Leader of the Year

​This award recognises the commitment and dedication of an outstanding NHS staff member who leads volunteers or has core responsibility for managing or coordinating volunteering at an NHS trust. We want to see examples of leaders who have innovated systems and services to bring about positive transformation for volunteer support staff, patients, and the volunteers themselves.

Click here to see last year’s winner.

Partnership working in volunteering

This award recognises the importance and value of bringing NHS volunteers together with other organisations in hospitals and the wider community. We want to see examples of how partnership working increases the value of the volunteer roles and the experience of staff and patients.

Click here to see last year’s winner.

Innovation in Volunteering Award

This award recognises the contributions and achievements of an innovative idea or scheme involving volunteers that have made a significant contribution to the staff and patients in a hospital. You can nominate an individual or a team for this award.

Click here to see last year’s winner.

Celebrating inclusion and diversity in volunteering

This award celebrates successful approaches to inclusion; projects or schemes that positively promote ethnicity, disability, refugees, the homeless, or carers for example, within their volunteering strategy. We want to see examples of how an inclusive approach has brought benefits to volunteer, staff,  patients and the wider community beyond.

Click here to see last year’s winner.

Frequently asked Questions

Who can nominate?​ We welcome nominations from volunteers, volunteer managers, patients, family & friends. 

Is this open to the whole of the UK? Yes, we welcome nominations from across England, Scotland, Wales, and Northern Ireland

Can I nominate someone who volunteers in the community? Yes, we welcome nominations for volunteers who work in all areas of our health services, in hospitals, as well as in the community 

Will there be a charge for making a nomination? No, there is no cost for making a nomination​.

If my nomination is shortlisted will I have to pay to attend the ceremony? Those who are shortlisted for the awards will only need to cover their travel expenses, the ceremony and lunch is free thanks to our kind sponsors Deloitte.

How many nominations can I make?​ Please only nominate once for each category unless otherwise stated​.

How will I know if the person I have nominated has been shortlisted?​ We will contact you via email if your nominee has been shortlisted​.

How many nominees are being shortlisted? We will be selecting two nominees for each category​​.

How are the categories being judged? A carefully selected judging panel will be going through each entry and choosing the shortlisted ​​nominees and winners.

 Will you pay my travel costs? No, unfortunately the Trust nominating will be required to pay for any travel costs associated with attending this event​​

 What prizes are on offer?​ Each winner will receive a Helpforce Champions trophy at the ceremony on 25th October 2019.  

When and where is the Awards Ceremony taking place?​ The ceremony will take place on Friday 25th October 2019, from 12.30pm – 4pm at Arundel House, 6 Temple Place, London WC2R 2PG – all nominees will be notified of further details if they are shortlisted.

Volunteering is humbling. It brings you back down to earth, and it has definitely taught me the value of patience, something I see from the staff in everything they do. I’m now always encouraging my mates to give a few hours a week to their local hospital too.

Birju Pujara, volunteer at Chelsea & Westminster Hospital Trust