Community Champion nominee Val "honoured"
PUBLISHED: 08:52 05 July 2012
A volunteer who started giving her time to community groups after being made redundant has been nominated to be named a Community Champion.
Nominate your Community Champion
Email your nominations for Community Champions to firstname.lastname@example.org, including your name, contact telephone number and email address.
Please include the name and contact number of the person you are nominating and about 150 words on why you are nominating them. Please also indicate whether or not they know they have been nominated. You can also send your nominations to Sarah Shaffi, Media House, 539 High Road, Ilford, IG1 1UD.
Twenty people will be shortlisted from each of the Olympic boroughs – Newham, Barking and Dagenham, Tower Hamlets, Hackney, Waltham Forest and Greenwich.
A panel of judges will then decide on the final 50.
The deadline for nominations is Wednesday, July 18.
Val Shaw, of Wilmington Gardens, Barking, volunteers for groups including Friends of Barking Hospital.
The 60-year-old has been put forward for the Community Champions scheme, being run by the Post and the London Legacy Development Corporation (LLDC), which will be in charge of the Olympic Park following the end of the London 2012 Games.
Fifty Community Champions will be named across the six Olympic host boroughs and each will get two tickets to the opening ceremony of the Paralympic Games and an invitation to meet a Paralympian.
Former legal secretary Val started volunteering with Age Concern in 1998, a year after she was made redundant.
She said: “I am really honoured to be nominated, but I don’t feel I deserve it, there are other people out there who deserve it more.”
Among the many places Val now volunteers for are Friends of Barking Park, Victim Support, Neighbourhood Watch, the Gateway to the Games project and Barking Library.
She said: “I enjoy the challenge and helping people. I started with helping elderly people because they were there for me before I was born. With the war, I might not be here if it wasn’t for them.
“Sometimes the elderly are frightened to speak out and if I can be there for them that’s good.”
Val was nominated by Tony Richards.
He said: “I am repeatedly discovering additional organisations to which she unstintingly devotes hours of her time.
“She is chairman of our Longbridge Area Residents’ Association. If she hears of a person or family with a problem she makes a personal call and takes the matter up with the relevant council department.”