Volunteer trio work tirelessly to help others

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THREE selfless individuals have been nominated for this year’s Community Stars Awards in the category of best volunteer.

Tash Vaughan, who works for Home Start Worthing and Adur, has been nominated by Zoe Prior.

The mother-of-one, of Wordsworth Road, Worthing, suffers with BiPolar, borderline personality disorder and arthritis.

She said: “Tash comes to my home once a week to help me. She has an amazing relationship with my son, who looks forward to seeing her every week and she supports us to get out and about when I feel unable to cope.

“She also gives me time to recover and rest and has been an endless font of emotional support for me through my struggles with mental health, chronic pain management and more recently my mother’s cancer.

“She goes above and beyond her volunteering duties, keeping contact and pointing me in the right direction of other sources of support or information.”

Alan Veness has also been nominated for his work with Freddysmile charity.

Lynne Davidson said: “Alan works tirelessly six days a week collecting and delivering furniture for the charity. He always has a smile on his face.”

He has also been nominated by Warren Street, who founded the charity with his wife Kelly.

He said: “Alan started volunteering last year after, sadly, losing his own wife and has improved the charity so much with all his commitment,

“He leaves the charity’s warehouse at 8.30am in the morning to start his deliveries and sometimes does not get home until 9pm.

“Alan never moans or complains when he has to lift sofas up stairways that are too small, or take customers’ doors off to get their furniture in, or even when it’s pouring hard with rain or even snow.

“He does not like letting anyone down and is an extraordinary and selfless man that would do anything for anybody.”

Mr Veness, of Test Road, Sompting, said: “My wife June died suddenly last year and I was her full-time carer so I then felt a bit lost with a lot of time on my hands. I ended up going to the charity and volunteering for a few hours and now I work six days a week doing deliveries and collections. I like the fact that I am meeting people all the time, as otherwise I would just be at home.

“I feel very surprised that I have been nominated. It is nice that people have noticed what I do but that is not the reason I do it.”

Also nominated is Peter Averillo, chairman of the Fishersgate Community Association.

Pete Berry said: “He has for a number of years led the fight to rebuild Fishersgate Community Centre, which opened in August. I have watched him work his heart out for many years, sometimes having to fight the council.”

Last week’s nominee for Health Hero, Jane Melhuish, spent the last 18 years of her career working as a district nurse.

You can nominate until the end of this month by emailing sian.gordon@worthingherald.co.uk