THE great and the good of volunteering in the borough have had their hard work and dedication recognised.

The Royal Borough Volunteer Awards 2014/15 took place on Tuesday (24/3) at Maidenhead Town Hall, in St Ives Road, organised by RBWM and WAM Get Involved with 11 awards being dished out to outstanding volunteers.

Yvonne Conroy, described as the “glue” which holds the Windsor Street Angels together and the “oil” which helps ensure things run smoothly, scooped the Royal Borough Volunteer of the Year award.

Pat Capp won the WAM Get Involved Volunteer of the Year for her tireless work to build the Sequela Foundation into a unique and highly beneficial service for people in East Berkshire suffering from neurological problems while suffering from Transverse Myelitis herself.

Sam Hester scooped the WAM Get Involved Community Young Volunteer of the Year for the help he provides to a young person with significant learning difficulties in Eton Wick enabling them to participate in mainstream youth activities that they would otherwise be unable to attend.

Other awards were dished out for people who excelled in the borough’s Adopt-A-Street programme and volunteers in the council services such as at its libraries and the CareBank project.

Eileen Denny, WAM Get Involved co-ordinator, said: "It was a lovely occasion with a great atmosphere, and we thoroughly enjoyed having the opportunity to thank the volunteers and to celebrate the wonderful spirit of volunteering we have in the Royal Borough.

"It was really inspiring to meet these volunteers who give so much of themselves to help others in their community.

The award winners' commendations in full RBWM VOLUNTEER OF THE YEAR - Yvonne Conroy: Yvonne regularly volunteers as a Street Angel between the hours of 9pm on a Friday evening and 4am on a Saturday morning, helping those in need after a night out. Her work helps to reduce crime and make Windsor an even safer place to be.

Behinds the scenes, Yvonne also works in the background as part of the Street Angel’s Steering Group. She is both part of the “glue” that holds Street Angels together, and the “oil” that helps to ensure things run smoothly.

*Highly Commended - Andrea Roberts Andrea has been providing counselling support to service users in SMARTs community drug and alcohol recovery service for well over a year now. Because of Andrea’s willingness to provide her services for free, those looking to make positive changes in their lives have access to a service that otherwise would not be available to them.

WAM GET INVOLVED VOLUNTEER OF THE YEAR - Pat Capp: Pat has worked tirelessly to build the Sequela Foundation into a unique and highly beneficial service for people in East Berkshire suffering from neurological problems while suffering from Transverse Myelitis herself.

The Foundation meets during the day on Tuesdays providing various therapeutic activities with Pat dedicating many hours both during and beyond the sessions themselves, fundraising, arranging outings, organising transport and offering support.

*Highly Commended - Andy Hunter Andy has been a volunteer driver with People to Places for around 24 years. In addition, he has trained approx. 75 people from People to Places and other community organisations in the national standard for minibus driving.

Andy has kept on giving his time and energy to the local community despite full time work commitments and suffering serious health problems back in the Spring of 2013.

*Highly Commended - Joan Poolman Joan is 89 years young and has been volunteering since 1996. She is an active volunteer at the RVS York Centre cafe, runs a whist club twice a week and also carries out regular home visits for CareBank. Joan reduces isolation and encourages people to come together with the vast majority of the people she serves being younger than her.

WAM GET INVOLVED COMMUNITY YOUNG VOLUNTEER OF THE YEAR- Sam Hester: Sam supports a young person with significant learning difficulties enabling them to participate in mainstream youth activities in Eton Wick that they would otherwise be unable to attend.

Sam is also involved in helping to run different aspects of each session resulting in him gaining valuable experience in areas such as money management and customer services.

Other RBWM Category Winners were: RBWM Adopt a Street - Brenda Pollock Brenda is a long standing volunteer with Adopt a Street in Old Windsor. She arranges various clear ups around the village when needed and turns up rain or shine to ensure the job gets done.

RBWM Community Safety - Yvonne Conroy (Overall Winner RBWM – see details above) RBWM Libraries & Heritage - Mena Trethewey Mena has become part of the RBWM Libraries family. She volunteers at Eton Wick Library every Wednesday reading stories to children during Storytimes, helping with Rhymetimes and also with craft activities during school holidays.

She has initiated a fortnightly Chess Club which has now grown to become a Board Games Club. Mena is generous with her time and skills and has become like a grandmother to many of the children she supports.

RBWM Other Departments / Services - Kristina Hohenauer Kristina has been with CareBank since Oct 12 and has given over 300hrs of her time, befriending and shopping for the elderly people she supports, despite being in and out of hospital herself.

Previously she has also volunteered with the RVS Community Cafe on York Road in Maidenhead.

Street Awards Highly Commended – Best Kept Community Street Competition 2014/ 2015 Clewer Avenue, Windsor Winner of Best Kept Community Street 2014/2015 Rushington Avenue, Maidenhead Highly Commended Best Kept Street Competition 2014/15 Briar Dene, Furze Platt, Maidenhead Winner of Best Kept Street Competition 2014/15 Murray Court, Sunninghill