Dalkeith volunteer gets award from Edinburgh's Lord Provost for 20 years volunteering with children’s charity

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Midlothian man recognised for two decades of service

A Dalkeith man has won a special recognition award for his exceptional commitment and significant impact on the lives of families during his 20 years as a volunteer at children’s charity Children 1st.

Richard Andrews received the award from Edinburgh’s Lord Provost Robert Aldridge at a special ceremony on June 7, the final day of Volunteers Week 2023. The annual Inspiring Volunteers Awards are given out by Volunteer Edinburgh to recognise outstanding individuals who have made considerable contributions to their communities through volunteer work.

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Modest Richard explained how touched he was to have received the award. He said: “I feel very flattered and proud. I know that there are lots of dedicated volunteers both at Children 1st and in other organisations, so I’m very surprised that I’ve won. I see it also as a great endorsement of the charity’s values, ethos and support.”

Richard Andrews (left) accepting the award from Edinburgh's Lord Provost Robert Aldridge.Richard Andrews (left) accepting the award from Edinburgh's Lord Provost Robert Aldridge.
Richard Andrews (left) accepting the award from Edinburgh's Lord Provost Robert Aldridge.

Children 1st’s Parentline offers families across Scotland practical, financial, and emotional support over the phone or by webchat, seven days a week, from the charity’s Edinburgh hub.

Volunteering at Children 1st has been life-changing – not only for the more than 700 Scottish families Richard has supported over his 20 years at Children 1st Parentline, but for Richard himself. The former investment banker said: “I used to work in a hard-driving, tough environment. When I was made redundant in early 2003, I thought that I now had the time to ‘give something back’. I applied for the training at Children 1st Parentline and discovered that it gave me the opportunity to fully express my listening and compassionate side in a professional environment.”

Throughout Richard’s 20 years as a volunteer, he has given more than 1500 hours of his time and supported more than 700 families.

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Clare Smith from Children 1st Parentline said: “Richard’s dedication to volunteering with Children 1st Parentline is nothing short of remarkable. We’re delighted he has been recognised with this award. Even after all these years Richard is never complacent about the support he provides to families and approaches every conversation with the same care, empathy and compassion, consistently striving to do the very best for every family he supports.”

Children 1st Parentline is one of many national and local services offered by the charity to help keep children in Scotland safe, loved and well with their families.