Lottie Edwards, Engagement Manager at LED Community Leisure with her Above & Beyond Award
Lottie Edwards, Engagement Manager at LED Community Leisure with her Above & Beyond Award

LED Community Leisure is celebrating after winning The Above and Beyond trophy at the inaugural Active Kindness Awards on 5 December 2023.

Organised by Community Leisure UK, these awards celebrate the work of Charitable Trusts and Social Enterprises in developing sustainable volunteering programmes in the public leisure and culture sector.

The Above and Beyond Award recognises a company or individual that has gone above and beyond with their involvement in the Active Kindness project.

LED Community Leisure was awarded the accolade because of Community Engagement Manager Lottie Edwards commitment to volunteering and Active Kindness. Lottie clocked up more than 1,000 miles to attend meetings bringing with her contagious enthusiasm, inspiring both volunteers and Active Kindness members alike.

Bryony Hudson, Active Kindness Programme Manager, said: “Lottie has an infectious personality and that’s really important when it comes to volunteering because that enthusiasm is passed on to others, who then pass it on to even more people. She’s been 100% committed to this project, a 1,000 mile journey is testament to that.”

Peter Gilpin, CEO of LED Community Leisure, said: “Lottie is a very well-deserved winner of this award, and we are very proud of the work that she does within the local community. The fact that we have 40 volunteer walk leaders supervising 3,300 wellbeing walkers in East Devon is a wonderful example of what she has achieved this year, so important as we recover from the pandemic.”

The Active Kindness programme began life four years ago, following funding from Sport England, with the aim of creating a volunteer approach specific to Charitable Trusts and Social Enterprises delivering public leisure and culture. However, due to covid, the project had to wait until 2022 to really getting, but since then Community Leisure UK has worked with partners at the National Council for Voluntary Organisations (NCVO) to support 14 Community Leisure UK members with training that supports the implementation, enhancement and monitoring of volunteer strategies.

Winners at the Active Kindness Awards Ceremony also included:

  • The Equality, Diversity & Inclusion Award – Rossendale Leisure Trust
  • Outstanding Contribution Award - Everybody Health and Leisure
  • Consider It Done Award - Active Luton
  • The Spirit of Volunteering Award – GLL (Manchester)

Kirsty Cumming, CEO of Community Leisure UK, said: “Developing a strategic resource for our members that strengthens and celebrates volunteering in public leisure and culture has driven this project since day one. Tonight wasn’t just about those who received an award. Most importantly it was about recognizing of all those who have taken part in Active Kindness to date and the great strides taken by them to improving the volunteers experience which, ultimately, supports our members to get more people involved in creating healthier, happier and more creative communities.”