Over 260 organisations across the UK have received the King’s Award for Voluntary Service, the government has announced.
The King’s Award for Voluntary Service, previously known as the Queen’s Award for Voluntary Service, is equivalent to an MBE and the highest award recognising local voluntary groups in the UK.
This year, 262 charities, youth groups and museums were recognised for their “outstanding work”, an increase on the 244 organisations that received the award in June 2022.
Meanwhile, to mark his birthday, King Charles III unveiled the Coronation Food Project, an initiative that aims to tackle food waste and food needs in the UK in partnership with charities the Felix Project and FareShare.
The Big Issue reported that the project will be co-chaired by Baroness Casey of Blackstock and Martina Milburn, former chief executive of the Prince’s Trust.
Last week, Buckingham Palace announced that three charities founded by the king while he was Prince of Wales – the Prince’s Trust, the Prince of Wales’s Charitable Fund and the Prince’s Foundation – will be renamed the King’s Trust, King Charles III Charitable Fund and the King’s Foundation, respectively.
The Prince’s Trust International will also be renamed the King’s Trust International in due course, the charity has confirmed.
Award recipients: ‘It’s an incredible honour’
This year’s award recipients include charities such as BEEP Doctors (BASICs) Cumbria, Caritas Diocese of Salford and Wandsworth Mediation Service (WMS).
Theo Weston, chair and founder of BEEP Doctors, said: “This is a massive honour and we’re immensely proud to have been awarded the King’s Award for Voluntary Service.
“In my view, it’s by far and away the best thing to have happened to the BEEP Doctors charity in our nearly 30-year history.”
The trustees of WMS said: “We’re delighted that the peace-making vision of WMS has been recognised by the king. Over the past 20 years, our work has supported and empowered thousands of people in conflict, improving lives and reconnecting families, colleagues and communities.”
Patrick O’Dowd, director of Caritas Salford, said: “It’s an incredible honour for our amazing volunteers to be recognised by King Charles in this way.
“We’re hugely proud and it really is testament to the selfless time and dedication every individual who helps our charity gives. Between them, they dedicate thousands of hours every year to support Caritas and we’re so grateful for their support.”
Government: ‘Brilliant to see the king continue the late queen’s legacy’
Culture secretary Lucy Frazer said: “Each year, millions of volunteers give up their time to provide care and support, and this award recognises those truly making a difference to the lives of others across the UK.
“It’s brilliant to see the king continue the legacy of her late majesty and reward those who support their local communities with kindness and compassion. Congratulations to all those who have been awarded.”
Awardees will be announced on 14 November each year to mark King Charles III’s birthday, as the monarch turned 75 today.
Eligible groups for the next round of awards will be assessed from December 2023 to May 2024.The King's Award for Voluntary Service 2023.xlsx