Duke of York award joy

NADV 1511091AM1 Duke of York Award. Harrogate Supporting Older People scheme manager  Charlotte O'Brien with volunteers Debbie Dean, Derry Jones, Mavis Cannon, Susan Tetley, Gemma Kell, Karrie Murphy, Glyn Robins, Ronnie Menage, Judith Simpson, Bridget Dawson and Graham Langton.  (1511091AM1)

NADV 1511091AM1 Duke of York Award. Harrogate Supporting Older People scheme manager Charlotte O'Brien with volunteers Debbie Dean, Derry Jones, Mavis Cannon, Susan Tetley, Gemma Kell, Karrie Murphy, Glyn Robins, Ronnie Menage, Judith Simpson, Bridget Dawson and Graham Langton. (1511091AM1)

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In recognition of the work it does in and for the local community Harrogate charity Supporting Older People has been awarded the Duke of York’s Community Initiative.

Founded in 1982 with the aim of stopping loneliness and isolation among the over sixties who live alone in the district, the scheme has grown.

Last year its volunteers gave in excess of 4,500 hours of their own time to visit their new friends.

In addition to visiting the project runs a programme of monthly group activities such as minibus outings to local places of interest, tea and talk, computer courses and a singing group.

The group also runs larger events such as Harrogate’s International day for Older People Service in October, a Volunteers’ Week Garden party in June and a Christmas party.

Presented annually to organisations who are seen to be making a very real difference to the communities they serve the award will be given out to 34 different groups by HRH The Duke of York at a ceremony to be held in the New Year.

Speaking of the award Kate Rogata, SOP Director said: “We are delighted to receive this prestigious award, recognising the difference our work makes to the lonely, older people of Harrogate.

“This is really special for everyone who volunteers or works for SOP and we are delighted that our colleagues at Harrogate CVS also received the award.”

The Duke of York’s Community Initiative is open to local charities and community groups from across Yorkshire.