In an official press release released by 10 Downing Street earlier today, its been announced that Loughborough Students’ Action is the latest winner of the Prime Minister’s Big Society Award.
Local MP Nicky Morgan nominated the volunteering section for the award having volunteered herself at the first Soup Kitchen project back in 2011.
Action Chair Billy Marsh told The Epinal:
“Two years ago Adam [Adam-Lucas Pettit, Action Chair 10/11] and I looked into applying for the award and it never went anywhere until Dave [David Cox, Action Chair 11/12] decided to finalise and send it off. Never in a million years did I think we would win and when I got the phone call last week I was beside myself, it’s a high that hasn’t quite ended yet, our volunteers are a credit to the Students’ Union, the University and most importantly themselves.”
Last year, Action involved 2,303 volunteers in local and international projects which equates to 19,000 hours of work which on minimum wage, would be worth £120,000. The section has also fundraised over £70,000 to fund various national projects such as Kids Camps as well running international projects year after year.
In response to Loughborough Students Action winning the award, Prime Minister David Cameron stated:
“We have seen through the National Citizen Service that once someone has tried volunteering they are likely to carry on giving their time. That’s why the work Loughborough Students’ Action Group does in helping a whole generation of local students make their first steps in volunteering is so important. Their commitment to involving the whole student community including international students with the local community is fantastic.
“By making volunteering the norm in their community Action has given thousands of hours of time to making a difference to local people and this Big Society Award recognises that. I hope they continue to inspire even more people to get involved.”
“Winning this Big Society Award is indescribable – it’s something I’ve always believed in and I believe that Action embodies. There’s a hundred and one reasons why people volunteer but at the end of the day, we like to think that our volunteers do it because they genuinely care.
“The vast majority of our volunteers come from further afield than Loughborough, but many like to treat it as their new home. With this kind of attitude, our volunteers make sure that this new home is one that they can be proud of whilst at the same time giving a little back to the place that has taken them in. To us, all of our students are superheroes, saving the world one project at a time.