Wigtownshire volunteer groups receive Royal recognition

Two Wigtownshire volunteer groups have been royally recognised in this year’s Queen’s Award for Voluntary Service.

The Lord-Lieutenant for Wigtown, Aileen Brewis, announced the two winners
The Lord-Lieutenant for Wigtown, Aileen Brewis, announced the two winners

The QAVS is the highest award a voluntary group can receive in the UK and two of this year’s winners are the Port William Community Association and the West Galloway Branch of St John Scotland.

The Lord-Lieutenant for Wigtown, Aileen Brewis, said: ‘It is extremely gratifying that two of our outstanding voluntary organisations have been awarded the Queen’s Award for Voluntary Service for the outstanding work they carry out in our communities.

‘West Galloway Branch of St John Scotland literally do ‘go the extra mile’ to provide a unique, bespoke, life-enhancing, and caring service for cancer patients.

"These dedicated volunteers operate 365 days a year driving clinically vulnerable patients to hospitals as far away as Edinburgh and Glasgow, waiting for them and then driving them home again in comfort.

"Highly respected by health professionals, the group works closely with the Oncology Unit at Dumfries and Galloway Royal Infirmary and also the Galloway Community Hospital in Stranraer where there is a two-bed St John palliative care unit.

"Other St John volunteers are here carrying out wonderful work comforting patients and their families during their time in the unit.

“The Port William Community Hub, meanwhile, is an enthusiastic and dedicated voluntary group at the heart of its community.

"It has been in existence for more than 70 years and its dedication to its village and surrounding area is outstanding.

"The volunteers embody a true community spirit and work with local organisations to organise many social activities throughout the year including the annual village Summer Carnival Week.

"During the pandemic volunteers were very busy helping older and vulnerable people with practical issues such as shopping or collecting prescriptions.

"Their service to their local community is truly fantastic, and this award is richly deserved.”

Over in Dumfriesshire volunteers working with Annan Riding of the Marches have also been recognised.