The Queen’s Award for Voluntary Service is often referred to as the MBE for voluntary groups, and is the highest award that can be given to voluntary groups.  It is a recognition of the hard work that the recipients put in to their chosen cause, making a difference to the lives of hundreds of people every year.

Since 2014 The Community Foundation for Staffordshire has worked closely with the Office of HM Lord Lieutenant of Staffordshire to make nominations, helping to arrange visits and to support organisations throughout the application process.  Over this time there has been a significant increase in the number of organisations from Staffordshire receiving this award.

Winners of the award must be an organisation where the majority of people involved are volunteers, and where at least half of those volunteers have a right to live in the UK.  In addition they must be providing a service or meeting a need that exists for people in the local area, they must be locally run, have been running for more than 3 years and be supported, recognised and respected by their local community.

Each recipient organisation will receive a certificate signed by the Queen and a domed glass crystal.  Representatives from the group may also be invited to attend a royal garden party.

Once an organisation has been nominated they will usually receive a visit from a local panel, and if successful at that stage, their nomination is sent to the National Award Committee.  This committee will then make recommendations to the Cabinet Office, which then sends a final list to the Queen for her approval.

Although The Community Foundation for Staffordshire can help with applications and support organisations throughout the process, it is not an exclusive offer.  Organisations do not need to be nominated through The Community Foundation, and can self nominate, or be nominated by anyone that knows them well.

If you would like to suggest someone for an award you can read more about the award, the process, and make a nomination on the Queen’s Awards for Voluntary Service page of the website, available here.