Observer Community Awards: Search is on for your community heroes
The search is on for your community heroes as we launch this year's fantastic Observer Community Awards.
We are asking our amazing readers to nominate the people who they think deserve one of our fantastic awards which really highlight the important role they play in the community.
There are 13 categories in which readers can put forward their nominations including best volunteer, best community event and best school.
Once all of the nominations are in the Observer will publish the shortlist from which our readers can choose the winners.
These will then be revealed at a fantastic ceremony held at Butlin’s on December 4 hosted by Fred Dinenage with Rolls-Royce this year’s principle sponsor.
Editor-in-chief Gary Shipton said: “There are so many fantastic people and organisations who work hard and really are the heart of our community.
“We are so proud of our community awards. They really are the perfect opportunity for these people to receive our thanks and be properly recognised.”
The range of categories in which readers can nominate cover a wide range including sports, the arts, animals and voluntary work.
There is also a special category to recognise the efforts put in by our young people, a bravery category and one for a person who is simply an inspiration to those who are around them.
Mr Shipton said: “Anyone who has had the pleasure of coming along to one of our previous community awards knows just what an inspirational evening it is.
“Filled with tales of selfless and committed people who dedicate their time and energy to others, or those who have gone above and beyond, it really is a fantastic event.
“I would urge all of our magnificent readers to get in touch with us and let us know who they think deserves recognition this year.
“I very much look forward to again hearing all of the magnificent stories and reasons behind your nominations. These are your community heroes so make sure they are nominated.”
BEST VOLUNTEER - SHIRLEY HENRY AWARD
So many people give up their time for others to ensure that organisations can continue to operate, or pass on their skills and talents on to others.
BEST COMMUNITY PERSON
This is the person who is always asked to help and who always says yes. They could run a sports team, support vulnerable people or help organise events making our area a better place.
Know a youngster who is a real inspiration? They may have overcome a personal hurdle, played a key part in a community effort or simply have been consistently kind and thoughtful to those around them.
Schools are more than just exam results. The best schools are those which play a vital role in the development of their pupils and also play a key part in the community.
Teacher, support workers, parent helpers, dinner ladies, caretakers, school crossing patrols...... do you know anyone without whom your school would be a much poorer place.
Behind every successful sporting team or star there is a dedicated coach putting in maximum effort and hours to get the best out of everyone.
SPORTS TEAM OR SPORTS PERSON OF THE YEAR
Do you know a team who have performed beyond expectations, shown commitment and determination, provided an inclusive environment or acted as role models.
This could be someone who has refused to be beaten and shows determination to keep fighting against the odds. Courage takes many forms and we’d like to hear about people who deserve to be recognised.
SPECIAL RECOGNITION AWARD
Whether it be one amazing act of kindness or years and hard work and dedication, this award is for those who need to have their efforts recognised.
HERO TO ANIMALS
Helping those creatures who cannot help themselves, there is a dedicated army of animal lovers out there who care for our furry friends.
BEST LOCAL VOLUNTARY/CHARITY GROUP
Playing an ever-increasing role in society, charities, community and voluntary groups are vital to the wellbeing of our local community so we want to celebrate their hard work.
BEST COMMUNITY EVENT
Family fun days, fetes, free concerts and flower shows.... Without these non-commercial events our communities would be a duller place. Which is your favourite?
CONTRIBUTION TO ARTS IN THE COMMUNITY
We’re looking for people involved in community events, dance, drama, music, or any type of performance whether teaching, organising or performing whose efforts bring the arts closer to the community.
OBSERVER AWARD FOR SPECIAL ACHIEVEMENT
Chosen by the Observer, this award recognises the special achievements or effort by an individual or a group.