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Coronavirus (COVID-19)

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Derbyshire Beacon of Hope Awards

RecipientsRole
Alison Jones Alison and Communication Unlimited have ensured that the deaf community have had full access to information and support during the pandemic.
Alvaston Achievers During the pandemic Alvaston Achievers have supported the children and families in their community in multiple ways such as through the organisation of events, food parcels, and specialised packs to support families with special needs children. 
Anna Fisher Anna has given up much of her family time to keep regular dance classes happening via Zoom. This has given her students something to look forward to, as well as allowing them to socialise and keep increasing their skills.
Baz Jabbar Basit has helped the community throughout the pandemic by leading a group of people to support the community project Derby Crisis Response.
Caroline Cox Caroline leads a local Beaver pack and has worked tirelessly throughout the pandemic to make sure the children in her pack still have access to as many Scouting resources as possible. She has arranged weekly Zoom meet ups, set challenges, delivered badges and equipment to homes by hand and helped to keep up the spirits of her Beavers. 
Chrissa Wadlow Chrissa is the founder and director of Sunshine Support, a not for profit organisation which supports families of children with Special Educational Needs. During the pandemic she has provided specialist educational support to schools and families, as well as setting up a community fund to support those who have been affected financially to still have access to information. 
Communication Unlimited Communication Unlimited have worked tirelessly throughout the pandemic to ensure that Deaf people who use BSL were still able to access information and interpreter support. 
RecipientsRole
David Rowen David is the owner of A52 Cars and has offered free rides to and from Derby Arena to support people receiving their vaccinations. Many would have struggled to receive their vaccinations without his support. 
Debra Kydd Debra was a self-employed cleaner prior to the pandemic, who began cleaning a care home working tirelessly to serve others whilst also dealing with the loss of her mum to Covid-19.
Denise Hawley Denise and the food bank team have worked tirelessly to keep the food bank open, ensuring a reliable provision of food to some of Derby’s most vulnerable families.
Derby Community Parent Programme Derby Community Parent Programme have continued to provide essential voluntary peer support to expectant and new parents, via 1-1 sessions and within the community despite the challenges of the pandemic.
Derbyshire Insight Talking Therapies The team at Derbyshire Insight Talking Therapies have continued to provide free talking therapies across Derby City for those struggling with anxiety, depression, phobias and trauma despite professional and personal the challenges of the pandemic.
Diana Bruce Throughout the pandemic Diana has been the person who has kept local residents informed and engaged, which has meant that people have remained connected. She sent out regular monthly newsletters to residents informed whilst also managing the Six Streets website which provides further support and information to those in need. 
Disability Direct Disability Direct has worked tirelessly by handing out free PPE to Disabled and Elderly Carers, having multiple Plot to Plate allotments for members to use and keeping The Enabled Centre open to allow vulnerable disabled people to receive support and be part of a community.
Doorways After being unable to continue their work feeding the homeless in Derby because of the pandemic, Doorways established a food bank to support more than 100 people a week.
Earl Leon Richards Earl has collected and delivered food to struggling families, as well as supporting them with other essential household items.
Gareth Mitchell Gareth has provided weekly Zoom meetings for two Cub packs every week and assisted with the Beaver colony at the 73rd Derby Allestree Scout Group. He ran virtual sleepovers and events which have not only engaged the children but their families too. He has hand delivered materials to everyone so they can take part in activities and supported individuals who have struggled during the pandemic. He has supported over 60 children each week with his selfless generosity.
Gaynor Shaw Gaynor is the choir leader for Local Vocals, a community choir serving the wider West End area of Derby, based at the West End Community Centre. She has gone above and beyond during the pandemic by ensuring that choir members keep in touch through social media and on the doorstep. She has continued to lead the choir every week via zoom, with uplifting enthusiasm, yet has been able to recognise the difficulties and struggles that members have had along the way, especially with the need for supporting people's mental health. 
Hannah Herve-Petts Hannah is the HR Manager at the QUAD and has played a pivotal role supporting QUAD employees and managers. She has been the person both employees and managers have turned to. From communicating reassurances around furlough, pay, safety measures and supporting employees' mental health. Hannah has also been pivotal in supporting a range of cost saving measures vital to the longevity of the business, which again she has dealt with single handily over and above what would be normally expected.
RecipientsRole
Inspire Fitness Academy Inspire Fitness Academy have worked tirelessly to keep disadvantaged communities and families who are most in need, engaged and supported throughout the pandemic through the provision of remote activities, care and food packages.
Jane Witherow Jane has gone above and beyond managing the Derby City Council customer contact centre during the pandemic, whilst also fining innovative ways to fundraise and volunteer for Yappy Dog Rescue.
Jaswinder Kaur Sudle Jaswinder has stepped up to create and lead a dedicated team of volunteers who are providing 200 meals every week through the Ramgarhia Sabha Sikh Temple.
Jemma Brown Jemma is an NHS nurse who has been deployed to various different roles during the pandemic. At weekends she has been working as part of the team administering Covid-19 vaccinations at Derby Arena. Jemma and her mum have also been making face coverings and selling them to raise money for local charities.
Jo Andrew Jo works tirelessly in her role at Revive and in her own personal time to help families in crisis. She never stops thinking of fundraising initiatives and is always looking at ways to improve the lives of those who find themselves in severe situations. She constantly strives to give children a better life and never stops until she makes them smile and has made a positive impact on so many.
Joanna West Joanna was asked to consider working in a supermarket as soon as lockdown started, which she jumped into. She worked helping other shop workers to give them extra help cleaning the store, acting as security on the doors to stop too many people shopping, stocking shelves and helping shop workers have extra breaks just by being there. She then committed to a longer period of work at a larger store where a specially commissioned community hub project was set up for those who were able to afford food but couldn't leave the house due to isolating. She provided a caring voice on the phone to the same customers each week, giving them a lifeline of someone to speak to at a worrying time. 
Jonathan Earnshaw Jonathan volunteered as a traffic marshal at Kedleston Road Covid-19 hub, for around 12 weeks. Whilst doing this he also did shopping for several members of the community. When the hub closed, he then began to volunteer as a driver for Fair Share Food. After being furloughed he then volunteered as a marshal at the Derby Arena vaccination centre, and continue to do so at weekends after going back to work full time.
Kalwinder Singh Dhindsa Kalwinder is a well-known author, poet and community activist who has been supporting and promoting mental health and wellbeing within Asian communities and wider society for over 10 years. During the Covid-19 pandemic Kalwinder has helped to safeguard elderly Asian families by supporting the continued closure of religious places of worship. 
Keira Davies Kiera used her Christmas money to buy boxes and ingredients to bake cakes which she dropped off with people who have been isolating, feeling sad and needing a pick me up, homeschooling children or are missing their friends. She has spread a little love around her local area, whilst attending her online lessons at school.
Kerry Ganly Kerry was furloughed during the first lockdown and despite home schooling two children she volunteered PR support to several Derby charities, including Treetops Hospice, securing them welcome news coverage at a time when they were struggling financially. She also gave up her time and used her contacts and professional skills to raise the profiles of those workers who deserved recognition in the press for their work during the pandemic. Although Kerry is now back in paid employment with Derby agency Penguin PR she continues to volunteer on a regular basis with E4E, carrying out virtual mock interviews and mentoring services with children who have been identified by Derby and Derbyshire schools as requiring support. 
Kiana Carrington-Roberts Kiana has gone out of her way to support parents throughout the pandemic through initiative such as the sling library and not for profit eco store which have remained open to serve the vulnerable. She has empowered and supported others through signposting, listening, and providing much needed empathy.
Lindsey Hatfield During the pandemic Lindsey has consistently supported small businesses and their owners and was instrumental in proactively contacting small business owners to raise awareness of grants that were available. In addition, she has galvanised and supported small businesses connecting them with opportunities and providing support during times of intense challenge.  She deserves to be recognised for going above and beyond her role and being a cheerleader for businesses across Derby and Derbyshire.
Marnie Wadlow Nine-year-old Marnie was determined that every family should have a nice Christmas day, so she initiated and coordinated a campaign to provide families with food and drink for a Christmas Day meal. Marnie approached her Mum and asked, “are there families that can’t have a Christmas because Covid has stopped their parents from working?”. The week before Christmas Marnie presented her mum with a shopping list for starters, mains, desserts and even champagne. Together they brought everything needed and then Marnie delivered them to people's houses, as most couldn't leave the house due to shielding.
Matilda Swanson Through her role as HR consultant, Matilda has supported Midland Lead throughout the pandemic with her advice, thoughts and ongoing (practical) support. Matilda helped with stressful redundancy procedures, lots of paperwork around homeworking, furlough and flexible furlough and anything else required. 
Matthew Taylor Matthew has been working extremely hard to provide pre-made meals, food parcels, emergency packages and online activities/support over the last year.
This has not only been for YMCA Derbyshire residents but also for many isolated and lonely people in the Derbyshire area, including the elderly and families who have for any reason been unable to provide for their families. 
Murray Park Community School Staff at Murray Park Community school set up a food bank on site so they could distribute supplies to pupils’ families who are struggling financially during lockdown. The PRIDE Response Team distributed donations of non-perishable food, toiletries and household items to needy or vulnerable families. Staff delivered the emergency food parcels personally and are also offered to collect donations from people who were not able to visit the school. The service was boosted again before Christmas to ensure none of the school’s families went without food or essentials during Christmas.
RecipientsRole
Rachel Barnett / First Steps ED First Steps ED is a specialist eating disorder and mental health charitable organisation in the midlands. It has become a sanctuary of peace and positivity and a lifeline in recent months as it continued seamlessly through lockdown, providing a constant when all else was being reduced or cancelled. This helped so much as isolation and fear heightened and the attendance numbers increased as it benefited so many people.
Rocco Hawkins Rocco devotes his time to supporting vulnerable people in Derby who are struggling with their mental health.
Royal School for the Deaf Derby Staff at the Royal School for the Deaf Derby, but in particular the head teacher Helen Shepherd, went above and beyond for their pupils during the pandemic. The school remained open to all pupils throughout the national lockdowns and staff worked not just with pupils, but also with their families and the wider deaf community in Derby to support them with food parcels and sign language videos posted on YouTube explaining some of the lockdown rules. These were confusing for deaf people as the Government did not deliver them in British Sign Language.
Sandile Ndlovu When the pandemic first began, Sandile decided to begin a peer support group at her residence, YMCA Derbyshire. Many young people were finding it difficult to navigate the rules, not quite understanding why they couldn't go about normal life. Sandile held group sessions daily to allow other young people to express their emotions and chat to others openly about it to ensure they weren't hiding their feelings and could get the appropriate help or simply just be heard. Sandile then acted as a bridge between the young people and housing navigators, feeding back the way they were feeling and what support needed to be put in place. 
Shared Reading Project  and volunteers The Shared Reading Project was unable to hold its physical group meetings during the pandemic and many of the people they supported didn’t not have access to online devices and software such as Zoom to meet online.  Many of them are in care homes so the co-ordinators had to swiftly redesign their work to find new ways to support these vulnerable and isolated people and support the Shared Reading volunteers who were keen to continue to support people.  They reinvented the project and the volunteers started writing and sending poetry postcards each week to individuals with a total of around 2000 being sent over the past year.
Sonam Sandhu Sonam hosted a Virtual Olympics for World Kidney Day & Boost your Self Esteem month whereby there were 20 categories with over 20 judges including international Grime artist Eyez. Winners of each category won prizes from local businesses to support them during the global pandemic. Sonam also hosted a flashmob for Kidney Research UK to raise awareness for her friend to help him find a Kidney donor.
St Giles School St Giles School remained open throughout the pandemic, with staff going above and beyond to make sure that the children at their special school - some who have life-limiting illnesses - and their families didn't feel isolated. Staff put together individual home learning packs for those who were shielding, with one child using the resources to say his first-ever word - as witnessed by him mum during water sensory play - and another writing his name for the first time. The hard-working staff, who also have their own families to take care of, did regular pharmacy pick-ups and supermarket trips for essentials, for those families who couldn't leave their house during these unprecedented times.
The Bemrose School The Bemrose School remained open to vulnerable children throughout the pandemic and no child that wanted to attend was turned away. Teachers at the school ensured home learning packs were collated and delivered to every single child throughout the lockdowns. Staff also personally delivered birthday cards to children who were experiencing lockdown birthdays in particularly challenging times, going above and beyond for their pupils. Many of the school’s pupils live in deprived circumstances and teachers made welfare calls to vulnerable pupils on a weekly basis. 
Upbeat Communities In March 2020 a team of volunteers went to work collecting and delivering essential baby clothes, nappies and items to pregnant and new mums who would struggle to access these things due to charity shops and clothes banks closing. Volunteers also continued to collect baby donations and on a regular basis delivered baby clothes, nappies, baby items to new and pregnant asylum seekers & refugees. They have also continued to find innovative ways to create community for those seeking asylum who otherwise would have been extremely isolated and disconnected during this time.
Vanessa Boon Amongst many other community roles, Vanessa is the chair of Women's Day Derby who oversee the city's annual International Women's Day celebrations. Despite the challenges of the pandemic, Vanessa managed to put together an even more impressive schedule of events for 2021 taking place over 4 days with over 25 different virtual events covering topics ranging from domestic violence to amplifying marginalised voices, reaching and supporting hundreds of women in Derby and beyond. 
Victoria Twells Victoria is a frontline NHS worker and throughout the pandemic she has worked with patients daily face to face to provide essential healthcare. Victoria is a single parent and has sacrificed time with her family at weekends to now deliver the vaccination to the public. She is dedicated and committed to delivering healthcare to those most in need.