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Recognise The Volunteers That Make Our Communities Better

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Recognise The Volunteers That Make Our Communities Better

Queen's Award for Voluntary Service logoDo you involve volunteers?  Are they making an exceptional impact on a local community?  You could be awarded a Queen’s Award for Voluntary Service next year!

The Queen’s Award for Voluntary Service (QAVS) is the highest award given to local volunteer groups across the UK.  It was created in 2002 to celebrate the anniversary of the Queen’s Coronation.  It is the MBE for volunteer groups and is awarded for life.

It is awarded to groups of volunteers whose level of initiative and impact are truly exceptional.  169 volunteer groups currently hold the Award in N Ireland.  A successful group will normally have the following characteristics:

  • Volunteer-led: The volunteers are in the driving seat, setting the direction for the group’s work and spotting opportunities to develop it still further each year.
  • Exceptional compared with comparable groups: This group is likely to be one of the best of its kind in the country.
  • Making a considerable difference locally: The initiative of this group and the efforts of its volunteers have changed the situation dramatically for its beneficiaries.
  • Well-run: There are high standards of governance, financial management and safeguarding.
  • Outstanding reputation locally: The group has a high standing in the community and has an excellent reputation with beneficiaries, service providers and others.


QAVS are only awarded to the very best of hundreds of nominations each year.  This is a badge of excellence and a real achievement for a group.  It provides a big boost to the volunteers as well as great publicity for their work.  Visit the website to read about the eligibility requirements and get more information about this exciting Award.

Anyone can nominate a group, as long as they are not one of its employees or volunteers.  Nominations can be submitted between April-September each year via the Award’s website Nominations are particularly encouraged from beneficiaries of a group’s work, or from those who are not involved with the group but have observed and admired the results of their work.

The QAVS Team at the Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport administers the Award and they will happily help with any queries.  You can contact them at or 0207 271 6206.  Locally, the Representative for the Queen’s Award for Voluntary Service in Northern Ireland is Sandra Adair and she can be contacted at

Nominations for the 2022 awards close on 15 September 2021. 

  • Twitter: @queensawardvs
  • Facebook: @queensawardforvoluntaryservice
  • #QAVS2021

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