Four Home-Starts in communities across the UK have been awarded the first ever King’s Award for Voluntary Service, the highest award given to local volunteer groups in recognition of their outstanding community service.

Home-Start Garioch, Home-Start Norfolk, Home-Start Tamworth and Home-Start Telford and Wrekin are among 262 charities recognised for their outstanding work.

Formerly known as The Queen’s Award for Voluntary Service, the award was established in 2002 to celebrate Queen Elizabeth II’s Golden Jubilee. It is equivalent to an MBE and is the highest honour awarded to voluntary groups.

Awarded annually to the UK’s most inspiring volunteer-led groups for their charitable endeavours, this year four local Home-Starts have received the first ever King’s Award, in the name of His Majesty King Charles III.

Delighted by the news the four Home-Starts commented:

Mhairi Philip, Scheme Manager for Home-Start Garioch said “It is a huge honour and a privilege to win this award. It’s a wonderful way to recognise our volunteers who are the backbone of the organisation.  It is their support which makes the difference, brings about change and increases positive outcomes for the families we support.  It's a very special award for our very special volunteers.”

Liz Cross, Senior lead at Home-Start Norfolk said “Home-Start Norfolk are absolutely delighted to accept this award on behalf of our wonderful team of volunteers. We are very honoured to be amongst the first of King Charles III nominations for this prestigious award “

Caia Bryant-Griffiths, Manager for Home-start Telford and Wrekin said “The informal support offered by our volunteers can make a lifetime’s difference to young children and their parents. They provide a friendly and confidential ear to families who may be facing issues such as isolation, loneliness, financial worries, poor mental health, poverty, or disability. We are incredibly grateful for the commitment of our volunteers who willingly share their time and kindness to help others and make life better for those around them,” she said.

Dawn Candy, Director at Home-Start Tamworth said  “It has been an absolute privilege to be part of Home-Start, meeting the hundreds of volunteers and families and being part of the millions of minutes given freely to build wonderful childhood memories for Tamworth children and their parents.'


This year's winners add to the list of 14 Local Home-Starts previously recognised for this award by Queen Elizabeth II.


Peter Grigg, Chief Executive of Home-Start UK said, 

“In the 50th anniversary year of Home-Start’s first ever work in Leicester, it is a real privilege for another four amazing Home-Starts to be recognised in this way, joining the 14 previously recognised. The King’s Award is a moment of celebration and recognition for the brilliance of Home-Start volunteers, staff and families. In such challenging times for families and local charities, this recognition will also be crucial to help raise awareness and support for our vital work.”