A Torbay community stalwart is celebrating after receiving Sanctuary Housing’s first Torbay Community Star award of 2018.
Jenny Day, chair of Great Parks Community Centre in Paignton, was presented with the award for her dedication to her neighbourhood and putting others’ needs before her own while being a full-time carer.
The 53-year-old has worked at the centre for several years, running a range of activities including Bambino’s parent and toddler group, a weekly drop-in for older children and free family trips and events.
She became involved in setting up activities for young people at Great Parks following a change in her personal life.
Jenny explained: “A few years ago I took on the care of my grandchildren, who are now aged eight and ten, and realised local youngsters needed more to do in the area.”
Jenny suffers from dyslexia, which can make life more difficult, but through her hard work at the centre she has completed a range of courses which help her, including food hygiene, health and safety and childcare.
“I feel honoured”
She said: “This award is truly a privilege; I just genuinely love helping people. The centre has given me lots of support and if I can spend some of my time giving something back then I’m happy.
“Although I don’t expect to be rewarded for caring about the community, it’s fantastic that Sanctuary’s awards recognise unsung heroes across the neighbourhood, and I feel honoured to be one of the lucky recipients.”
Jenny’s accolade is just the first to be given as part of Sanctuary’s Torbay Community Star Awards programme, which will see local people nominate a Sanctuary-supported project or individual each month over the next year.
Each winner will be given the opportunity to donate £100 worth of goods to a community initiative of their choice. Jenny has donated her prize towards outdoor play equipment for the children’s club she supports at Great Parks.
“Above and beyond”
Sanctuary’s neighbourhood partnerships manager, Lynne Roberts, commented: “All of the nominations we had for Jenny emphasised how she is willing to go above and beyond in giving up her time to help people. I’d like to congratulate her on her achievement.
“It’s really important to us to invest in local people and help them realise the ambitions they hold for themselves and their neighbourhoods, and I hope our awards show how much we value the contributions of the Torbay community.”
Vote for June’s winner
Nominations for June’s Torbay Community Star Award are now open. Residents can cast their votes online at www.sanctuary-housing.co.uk/torbay-community-star-awards. Nomination forms are available from Great Parks Community Centre and the Crafty Fox Café ‘N’ Hub in Paignton as well as the Acorn Centre in Torquay.