Voluntary organisations and people who make a major contribution to their local communities and crime prevention have been given well deserved recognition and thanks at this year’s prestigious High Sheriffs’ Awards ceremony

More than 40 voluntary and community organisations were represented at this year’s ceremony held at Hylands House in Chelmsford where trophies, certificates and grants totalling £25,804 were presented by the outgoing High Sheriff of Essex, Lorna Rolfe.
The grants came from the High Sheriffs’ Fund, which was established to give credit to community initiatives which address crime, community safety and anti-social behaviour, and is managed by the independent charitable trust Essex Community Foundation (ECF).
Lorna Rolfe, who is the 836th High Sheriff of Essex, has travelled to all areas of the county during her year of office.  As well as visiting a great many voluntary organisations, she visited the Courts and spent time with Essex Police, Essex County Fire and Rescue Service and the Ambulance Service.
She said, “It has been my privilege to spend time with all the organisations that look after our well-being.  I have been warmly welcomed and have been constantly struck by their ‘can do’ approach to the many challenges they face.”
She paid tribute to the voluntary sector in Essex, “During my time as High Sheriff I have had the opportunity to meet members of the voluntary sector who tackle a wide range of issues.  I have been so impressed that accentuating the positive appears to be their everyday motto and have been amazed and humbled at what they accomplish against all the odds.
“They really do make a difference and can dramatically change the lives of others for the better.”
Essex based charity The Wilderness Foundation UK received an award for the community work it undertakes through the TurnAround Project, improving the lives and opportunities of vulnerable and disadvantaged young people by providing nature-based trails and workshops that build confidence and self-esteem.
The charity was represented by CEO Jo Roberts (pictured above, right of High Sheriff Lorna Rolfe).    This is the ninth year that TurnAround has been recognised for its pioneering work with young people in Essex.