Gerald Doherty, a volunteer officer with the Coleraine branch of the Conservation Volunteers, has recently been awarded ‘Regional Volunteer of the Year’ at an award ceremony held in the grounds of Musgrave Park, Belfast.
The Conservation Volunteer’s annual awards recognise and celebrate the achievements of the volunteers, groups and organisations it works with.
Gerald’s award was for the volunteer who has shown outstanding commitment, innovation or achievement in their volunteering, with demonstrable returns for both the individual and their local community and environment.
Gerald actually received a trio of awards on the day including recognition of having passed the milestone of devoting over 500 volunteering days and also achieving a certificate in Work-based Horticulture Level 2.
Daphne Purdy, manager, said that the whole team were thrilled with Gerald’s recognition.
“He is first to arrive every morning, and last to leave.
“He takes great pride and satisfaction from a job well done and has played a leading role in his team’s small enterprise of constructing garden features and planters.
“Gerry also takes specific responsibility for ensuring that tools and equipment are maintained in good working order and that the workshop and tool store is kept in safe and tidy condition.
“Gerry is involved in every single task carried out by the Conservation Action Team and is happy to work in all weathers. As well as being with the team all week, he is more than happy to help with activities that take place at week-nds or late into the evening and he frequently represents the organisation at public events and workshops. His reliability and his willingness to be a part of everything have made him an invaluable member of the team.”
Daphne went on to say that she was enormously proud and humbled by the contributions made by all of the volunteers. Certificates in work-based Horticulture Level 2 were also awarded to Lisa Cullen, Alison Cartwright and Christopher Craig.