Royal recognition for Ballymena PAUSE group

A Ballymena voluntary group which works in the community to provide help and support for people with addictions has been honoured with the Queen's Award for Voluntary Service.

Ballymena voluntary group - PAUSE - has been honoured with the Queens Award for Voluntary Service, the highest award a voluntary group can receive in the UK.

Last month, Mr and Mrs A. McKelvey from PAUSE attended a garden party at Buckingham Palace where they met the Queen and other winners of this year’s award, which is the highest award a voluntary group can receive in the UK.

PAUSE is one of 193 charities, social enterprises and voluntary groups to receive the prestigious award this year.

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The awards were created in 2002 to celebrate the Queen’s Golden Jubilee and winners are announced each year on June 2 – the anniversary of the Queen’s Coronation.  

PAUSE will receive the award from the Lord Lieutenant of Antrim later this summer.

Chairman of PAUSE John Keenan said: “It is with great pleasure that we receive this prestigious award from Her Majesty. The group’s impact on the community continues to grow as does the support we offer.

“This award reflects well on the services that the volunteers provide and is a worthy recognition of all their hard work in sustaining the group for over four years. Well done to all.”

The Queen’s Award for Voluntary Service Committee Chair, former broadcast journalist Sir Martyn Lewis said: “The judging panel for this year’s awards were struck by the quality and breadth of all the successful groups.

“The thousands of volunteers who give up spare time to help others in their community and to help solve problems demonstrate the very best of democracy in action.”

Minister for Civil Society, Rob Wilson, said: “I hope these groups continue to inspire others to get involved and make a positive impact so that we can continue to build a more compassionate society.”