National charity celebrates local victories with NCT Stars Awards

Released on: 28 April 2011

Winners across the country are celebrating today, after being commended at the NCT Stars Awards, which recognise the enthusiasm and dedication of the charity’s volunteers and specialist workers.

NCT, the UK’s largest parenting charity, offers expert information and trusted practical and emotional support to over one million new parents every year. The NCT Stars Awards, sponsored by Pampers, were presented to the winners at the NCT’s Big Weekend, May 15-16.

A high volume of nominations were received from the charity’s 105,000 plus members for nine different categories, all recognising and appreciating the work of their volunteers and specialist workers.

NCT has over 10,000 volunteers who give their time, energy and skills in more than 300 branch teams: providing support for parents, co-ordinating branch activities, fundraising, editing newsletters and much more.

The charity’s 900 qualified specialist workers – antenatal teachers, postnatal leaders and breastfeeding counsellors – provide courses and support to new parents and parents-to-be.

The NCT Stars Awards, sponsored by Pampers, recognise the achievements of both volunteers and specialist workers. The charity’s volunteer regional co-ordinators were also specially acknowledged for their work. The winners are:

Volunteer Categories:

Activist of the Year – Eleanor Molloy (NCT Coventry Branch)
For her work as a breastfeeding champion and representative in the Coventry Breastfeeding Strategy Group, leading the NCT’s participation in the Coventry Positive About Breastfeeding Project.

Bumps & Babies Group of the Year – Tamara Hammad (NCT Sutton, Epsom & District Branch)
For her work to establish Carshalton Playtime in January 2009, meeting the needs of lots of local parents with a friendly drop-in for themselves and their babies/toddlers.

Communication of the Year – Laurie Edmonds & Jane Miles (NCT Brentwood Branch)
For effective all round communication through the branch newsletter and electronic media.

Fundraising Success (Small branch) – Victoria Lowry (NCT Dunmow & District Branch)
For raising nearly £6,000 in the year 2009 after the branch had needed special support in the previous year and when little if any money had been raised. Victoria was one of a team under guidance from Branch Co-ordinator Louise Painter.

Fundraising Success (Large branch) – Kinza Sutton (NCT Chester Branch)
For raising over £9,000, placing Chester in the top ten fundraising branches, more than tripling fundraising profits over the previous year after coming near to branch closure.

Most Supportive or Innovative Volunteer – Laurie Edmonds (NCT Brentwood Branch)
For her innovation in developing the branch website and her supportive teamwork.

Specialist worker categories:

Most Supportive Specialist Worker – Rachel Langdon, antenatal teacher and breastfeeding counsellor from Richmond
For her kind, calm, humorous and problem-solving support to branch volunteers

Reaching All Parents – Rose McCarthy, antenatal teacher from Leeds
For her work to support vulnerable women from black and minority ethnic (BME) communities who traditionally would not access antenatal classes.

Specialist Workers Working Together – Basingstoke
For teamwork among qualified antenatal teachers and breastfeeding counsellors and students (antenatal, breastfeeding and postnatal) within the area. They are a well bonded group of specialist workers, working together in every aspect of what they do.

Ruth Howard, Branch & Volunteer Services Manager at NCT said: “All the nominees do a fantastic job in supporting new and expectant mums and dads at one of the most important times in their lives, and furthering the work of the charity.  These awards are an excellent opportunity for us to celebrate not only individual achievements but also the commitment of all our hard-working volunteers and specialist workers, and to show our appreciation.”