Active Kindness – Celebrating Volunteering Excellence 

Published on: December 6th 2023

VOLUNTEER development by Charitable Trusts and Social Enterprises was celebrated at the first-ever Active Kindness Awards.  

Organised by Community Leisure UK, the glitzy awards night – held in the Monastery, Manchester on Tuesday – celebrated the work of Charitable Trusts and Social Enterprises in developing sustainable volunteering programmes in the public leisure and culture sector.  

BBC Commentator, Jason Mohammad hosted the event which saw five trophies awarded.  

  • The ‘Consider It Done’ Award – Winner – Active Luton, Graham Simpson, Relationship Manager  
  • The ‘Above & Beyond’ Award – Winner – LED Community Leisure, Lottie Edwards, Engagement Manager  
  • Equality, Diversity & Inclusion Award – Winner – Caroline Beardmore, Volunteer Coordinator, Rossendale Leisure Trust  
  • The Spirit Of Volunteering Award – Winner- Leila Bendrimia, Community Sport and Health Manager, GLL (Manchester)  
  • Outstanding Contribution Award – Winner – Lee Malkin, Sports Development Manager & Keith Rogers, Youth Participation & Talent Lead – Everybody Health and Leisure  

Bryony Hudson, Active Kindness Programme Manager, said: “It’s been a joy to see how passionate our sector is about volunteering. These awards are recognition for a lot of hard work developing and enhancing volunteering and we applaud everyone who has been involved in this programme over the last two years.”  

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, the project had to wait until 2022 to really get going due to Covid, 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 which supports the implementation, enhancement and monitoring of volunteer strategies.  

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 recognising 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.”  

Find out more about Active Kindness.  


Pictured – The winners of the inaugural Active Kindness Awards  

About CLUK – Community Leisure UK is the members’ association that specialises in representing charitable leisure and culture trusts across England, Scotland and Wales.