Worthing’s thriving Heene Community Centre has been honoured with the highest award a voluntary group can receive in the UK.
The Queen’s Award for Voluntary Service recognises outstanding volunteer work and Heene Community Association is thrilled to have been chosen.
The busy centre, in Heene Road, is open seven days a week and offers a wide range of facilities, such as room hire, various leisure classes, an IT suite and the highly-regarded Café one22, all bringing people together in a modern welcoming environment.
Joanna Barden, centre manager, said: “I am delighted. It is a wonderful honour for the centre to be recognised for the Queen’s Award for Voluntary Service.
“I would like to thank every single volunteer for their time, hard work and commitment, as without their efforts this award would not have been possible. They have contributed towards making Heene Community Centre the heart of the community. They should be very proud of themselves.”
Joanna and Kate Henshaw, a long-term volunteer and vice-chairman of trustees, attended a garden party at Buckingham Palace in May, along with other recipients of this year’s award.
Heene Community Association was one of 281 charities, social enterprises and voluntary groups to receive the prestigious award this year. It was the only one in Worthing and one of five across West Sussex.
Joanna added: “The number of nominations and awards has increased year on year since the awards were introduced in 2002, showing the voluntary sector is thriving and full of innovative ideas to make life better for those around them.”
The association holds two fayres for the community during the year, both free entry. This year’s summer fayre is on Saturday, June 22, and the Christmas fayre is Saturday, December 7, both from 10am to 3pm. There is live music, entertainment, gift and craft stall, a tombola, grand raffle, refreshments by Café one22, lots of fun stalls and children’s activities.
Representatives of Heene Community Association will receive the award from Mrs Susan Pyper, Lord-Lieutenant of West Sussex later this summer.