A VOLUNTEER manager became a bright light of the charity sector after winning a national accolade.
Zoe Grant, volunteer manager at Havant charity Over The Wall, was named Volunteer Manager of the Year at the Third Sector Awards, which recognises the work of people across the charity and not-for-profit sector.
Over The Wall arranges free activity camps for seriously ill children, as well as respite for families.
Zoe, who joined the charity in 2013, has played a key role in increasing volunteer numbers at Over The Wall by 40 per cent 456 to 638 and counting.
She has opened more volunteering opportunities for people with disabilities, and helped secure a £100,000 grant from the Big Lottery Fund to develop the charity.
Zoe said: ‘It is a privilege to receive the award. I’m thrilled that the exceptional and unique experience we offer at Over The Wall camps has been recognised in this way.’
Zoe collected her gong at a ceremony hosted by comedian Mark Watson at The Lancaster Hotel in London.
She beat four other nominees in the category and impressed the panel of judges, including Duncan Shrubsole, director of policy, partnerships and communications at the Lloyds Bank Foundation.
He said: ‘Zoe seems to combine a focus on developing strong and effective systems of volunteer management with a personal touch and care for individual volunteers.
‘She creates a real sense of purpose and fun.’
Kevin Mathieson, CEO of Over The Wall, said: ‘We are thrilled that Zoe won this award, but we are not surprised. Since Zoe’s arrival at Over The Wall, she has transformed our volunteer department.
‘Zoe ensures our volunteers are valued, supported and recognised for the fantastic work they do with us, and we are thrilled her hard work is being acknowledged with such a prestigious award.
‘Having only just completed our summer season of camps, Zoe is already looking ahead to growing our unique volunteer family in 2017.’
For more details on the charity, see its website at www.otw.org.uk