As part of VARB’s on-going effort to highlight the outstanding work volunteers do in the Reigate & Banstead area we have introduced VARB’s Star Volunteer. We will be awarding your volunteers for their long standing commitment to volunteering, or because they have gone ‘above and beyond’ the call of duty in some way.

To recognise their achievements they will be given a certificate and their picture will be hung on our ‘Wall of Fame’.

If you have a volunteer you would like to nominate, please use the form below.

Wall of Fame

January 2017 – Vince White

Vince was nominated for our Volunteer of the Month award, January 2017 by Mandy Jenkins who is the Charity Officer and Volunteer Coordinator at Merstham Community Facility Trust (MCFT).  Mandy said “Vince has made a real impact at MCFT. He is one of our IT Buddies and volunteers for 12 hours a week in this role. He is also a volunteer at our Veterans Cafe on a monthly basis. Vince goes above and beyond for our clients, no job is to much for him and he makes a fantastic cuppa as well!”  Well done Vince you really deserve this award.


February 2017 – Debby Fendley

Debby has made such a positive impact at Stripey Stork in the relatively short time she has been volunteering with them.  She joined the team at a time when many of the experienced volunteers were distracted by the Christmas campaign yet was happy to roll her sleeves up and sort and check the regular donations they receive each week.  Debby helps out at least two shifts a week and will get involved wherever she can.  If she is aware that a group is going along to help out she will go along and help, if a donor asks if they can collect a bulky item she is quick to help pick up items and put packs together.  Debby is a great asset to the team and they love to see her at their “Nest”.  Thank you Debby you are one fantastic lady!!!


June 2016 – Irene Morgan

Irene Morgan is our first ever Volunteer of the Month! She was nominated by her colleague Genever who volunteers with Irene at the Cancer Research charity shop in Banstead.  Genever said “One of the ladies I work/volunteer with in the shop is just Superwoman.  She is in her 80’s , volunteers 2 days a week at the Cancer Research shop and has been for 15 years, she is also a volunteer steward at Polesden Lacey every week , a volunteer at Epsom Playhouse and a volunteer at Tattenham Corner library . She is still basically working full time with all the volunteering she does and I believe she is 83! She is such a lovely lady and an inspiration to all and I personally love her to bits! Her name is Irene Morgan and she is a star”. We think you’re a star as well Irene!!!


July 2016 – Cara Hunter-Rowe

Cara Hunter-Rowe was nominated by VARB.   Here is Cara’s story….    “After I lost my job in November 2011, I had an accident which resulted in a lengthy rehabilitation. As I had a serious problem with my hands (I could not use a pen or cutlery – so not a keyboard either) for a long period of time, I could not go back to work.   In mid-2013 I approached VARB to find a small volunteering job and, at that time, they needed some help in their office. So I started work in their office doing general admin jobs for a couple of hours a week. For me, I needed to know how much office work my hands were then able to cope with and I also needed to get out of the house as I was becoming isolated.  About 6 months later, I was advised of a similar vacancy with ESDAS (East Surrey Domestic Abuse Service) in their office. I have been doing both jobs for the last 3 years.

Both volunteering jobs have effectively provided an exercise programme for my hands and helped in their recovery process. During this time, I have been able to come off the painkillers I was on previously. Volunteering has also provided me with invaluable social contact each week; everyone is very friendly; I have always been treated well and it has helped me to maintain my confidence during this period of unemployment. As both jobs are a 20-minute walk from my home, they have also ensured that I have had some valuable exercise at least twice each week!

As I knew I would undertake office work in the future, I wanted to volunteer doing administration work and my volunteering involved a variety of roles – data entry, photocopying, preparing advertising packs/display boards for special events, helping clients (at ESDAS) with Statements and Applications and general administration.

After 3 years of volunteering, I am pleased to say that I am now well enough to return to full-time permanent work and have secured a job which I start on 1st August. I am looking forward to this with some trepidation but everyone at VARB and ESDAS have been very supportive throughout my job-hunting process”.  The VARB team will miss you Cara!!


August 2016 – Jenna Kelly

Jenna Kelly was nominated by YMCA East Surrey they said ‘Typically a nomination for an award would say about 4 years service but for Jenna has only been with us for 3 months and has managed to do this around college commitments. She is dedicated and hard working she uses her initiative and will often arrive before everyone else to help setup and stay until everyone has gone to tidy away. So although she hasn’t been here for 4 years she works and applies herself like she has and that is a rare commodity and one that we are extremely proud and thankful for.’   Well done Jenna!!


October 2016 – Simon Elson

Simon Elson was our Volunteer of the Month for October 2016.  Simon has volunteered with Reigate Conservation Volunteers for many years.  Alice our Project Assistant went along and surprised him at one of the many tasks days he volunteers at.  Well done Simon!!


November 2016 – Kirsten Mackinson

Kirsten Mackinson volunteers with The Children’s Trust at Tadworth Court.  Kirsten was our Volunteer of the Month for November 2016 and referred to us by Brianna Middleton-MacPherson who is the Volunteer Development Officer at The Children’s Trust. Well done Kirsten!!!


December 2016 – Joao Faisca

Joao was nominated by VARB’s Operation’s Manager for the volunteering, organising and support he gave to us at the VARB’s Festive Feast on Christmas Day. Well done Joao without him the event wouldn’t of been possible.


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Star Volunteer Nomination Form