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Tenovus Cancer Care announces Volunteer of the Year 2017!

Kevin Winner 2017

On July 6th, we celebrated the contribution of our band of volunteers at our annual Volunteer Awards at a ceremony at Cardiff’s Principality Stadium.

Our Volunteer Awards recognise and celebrate all the volunteers who give up their time and skills to support Tenovus Cancer Care. We currently have more than 2,000 volunteers across Wales and England and in the last year they have given an incredible 300,000 hours to fundraising, volunteering in shops and at events or helping to run our support services.

Awards are given to volunteers in seven different categories; Boldest, Creative, Inspiring, Respect, Supportive, Young and Group. One of these winners then wins the overall Volunteer of the Year in recognition of their unique contribution to Tenovus Cancer Care.

Kevin Bennett from Swansea was given the ‘Boldest’ award and was named this year’s Volunteer of the Year. Kevin is a fundraiser, champion for our Swansea Sing with Us choir and often helps at events. ‘Super Kev’ joined the Swansea choir in 2013, when he was recovering from cancer of the tonsils and losing his voice. Now, he’s a cornerstone of the group and a constant source of support for others.

Kevin took up running as part of his recovery from treatment and has continued to throw himself into fundraising as a means of showing his gratitude for his “second chance at life”. He has single-handedly raised over £30,000 for Tenovus Cancer Care.

Kevin said: “Back in 2012 when I started my treatment, which was very difficult, I saw a poster for Tenovus Cancer Care’s Sing with Us choir in Swansea. Joining that choir in 2013 was the best thing I’ve done. The more I learned about what this charity does in our communities, and how valuable and unique their services are, the more I wanted to help them by raising money.

“I’ll always keep going, always sharing the story of the good work this charity does in the community. I’ll always raise awareness by sharing my story.”

Our Chief Executive, Claudia McVie, said: “Our volunteers play a vital role in helping us deliver our services. We couldn’t do what we do without them. They are out there in the community, helping to support as many cancer patients and their loved ones as possible.

“The Volunteer Awards are our way of saying a great big thank you to everyone who gives their time to us and we’re particularly pleased for Kevin, who has worked so hard and made such a huge contribution to the charity. We’re incredibly grateful for everything he’s done for people affected by cancer, and he’s a tremendously worthy winner.”

Our other Volunteer Award winners for 2017 are:

Creative Award winner (sponsored by Allens Printers): Angela Murray, Pembrey
Angela Murray is a member of the Pembrey and Burry Port Friends of Tenovus Cancer Care fundraising group and a champion for the Sing with Us Carmarthen choir. She is an inspirational, creative and outstanding volunteer. She joined the choir in 2013 following a cancer diagnosis and has been unfailing in her support since. Angela has rallied other volunteers, arranged an array of coffee mornings, craft mornings, gala dinners, concerts, lunches, Singathons and attended community events all to support and raise funds for our work.

Supportive Award winner (sponsored by Sears Seating): Janet Braddick, Cardiff
Janet started volunteering at our Warehouse after losing her husband to cancer. It was an incredibly difficult time for her, but she wanted to give something back. Janet’s always on-hand with ideas to streamline eBay processes and goes above and beyond time and time again. She’s even put together an eBay training course for staff and volunteers. The revenue generated by Janet has been incredible and she has helped raise tens of thousands of pounds in eBay listings for Tenovus Cancer Care.

Inspiring Award winner (sponsored by Pinnacle): Gwyneth Davies, Llandeilo
Gwyneth Davies is a member of the Llandeilo and Dinefwr Friends of Tenovus Cancer Care fundraising group. Gwyneth founded the group in 1983, and since then the group has grown into one of our longest-running fundraising groups, raising around £500,000. She built the foundations of a group that doesn't just raise fantastic funds for Tenovus Cancer Care, but that is also a loved and respected part of the Llandeilo community.

Respect Award winner: Lesley Willis, Wrexham
Lesley is a fundraiser and member of the Tenovus Cancer Care Wrexham Sing with Us choir. She’s helped at choir for three years, coming in early every week to set up and rarely missing a rehearsal. Lesley has shown huge commitment to us and is known as the Bucket Collecting Queen of North Wales! She’ll travel miles to help (once traveling over 70 miles!), and not just for an hour or two, she’ll collect all day. Lesley is an incredible, wonderful and selfless lady and her contribution and dedication to Tenovus Cancer Care is second to none.

Young Award winner (sponsored by Western Power Distribution): Megan Crombie-Davies, Bridgend
Bridgend volunteer Megan Crombie-Davies, aged 12, won the ‘Young’ volunteer award for her fundraising work for Tenovus Cancer Care; from making cakes to manning stalls or bucket collecting in the sun, in showers, in funny hats or in bright coloured wigs! She’s also completed several five-mile, and one ten-mile, Goodnight Walks to raise money for us. Recently, she gave a speech at her school about Tenovus Cancer Care and our services.

Group Award winner: Barry Friends of Tenovus Cancer Care Group
The Barry Friends of Tenovus Cancer Care fundraising group is made up of 12 wonderful members who are celebrating the group’s 50th birthday this year. Over the last 50 years, the group have fundraised and raised awareness of Tenovus Cancer Care within the Barry area. Mary Thomas, a founding member and the Chair of the group, has some wonderful stories of when the group first launched five decades ago. Back then the group visited local community groups giving talks on breast cancer awareness. Now the group hold many events each year, such as coffee mornings, quiz nights and garden parties, and are always keen to hold bucket collections in local supermarkets and at events.

We'd like to say a huge thank you and a big well done to all our shortlisted volunteers - you can read about all of them, including the winners, on our Volunteer Awards page.

If you fancy coming to volunteer for us, visit our Volunteer with Us web page.

If you're a journalist and would like to know more about the awards and our winners, you can get in touch with our Press Office.