Covid Champion winners are announced

The Oxmoor Community Fridge project distributed food to people in the area.

The Oxmoor Community Fridge project distributed food to people in the area. - Credit: HUNTS POST

The winners of an awards scheme to recognise the efforts of local people during the height of the coronavirus pandemic have been named.

Covid Community Champions is an initiative from Huntingdon MP, Jonathan Djanogly, and is being run in conjunction with The Hunts Post.

Mr Djanogly said he wanted to recognise the services and commitment of people in Huntingdonshire who had supported their communities during the most difficult of times.

Huntingdon MP Jonathan Djanogly has handed out certificates to the covid champions.

Huntingdon MP Jonathan Djanogly has handed out certificates to the covid champions. - Credit: Jonathan Djanogly

"Reading the incredibly impressive nominations really brought home to me, our local volunteers’ huge contributions made to our local communities. This wonderful effort included so many people, groups and organisations throughout the constituency.

Frankly, rating them against each other has been a tough task when they all deserve the highest praise.

I have no doubt that by working together, we have made a terrible situation so much bearable, particularly for the vulnerable in our communities."

The winners, chosen by Mr Djanogly and Hunts Post editor Debbie Davies, are: Cllr Patrick Kadewere, Susan Simpson, from the Godmanchester Timebank and Tish Peek, from the Hemingford Hub.

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The runners-up were names as: Gerald Dempsey, who set up the Three Pillars charity, St Ives Hub and the St Neots Community Support Group.

The Three Pillars charity supports people in the Cambridgeshire area.

The Three Pillars charity supports people in the Cambridgeshire area. - Credit: THREE PILLARS FACEBOOK

Patrick Kadewere

When the pandemic first hit Patrick organised a team of more than 70 volunteers to form the Covid-19 Response Team for Huntingdon.

He ensured the team had accreditation and it became the recognised organisation for Huntingdon.

Patrick co-ordinated the team to carry out thousands of food parcel and grocery drop-offs, hundreds of prescription deliveries, carrying out chores for isolated elderly residents, supporting domestic violence victims, providing gifts to carers and emergency key workers, carrying out large gardening jobs for shielding residents with mental health problems.

The group also provided IT equipment to local schools and families in the community who were working from home, as well as stationary and other essentials.

The Oxmoor Community Group handed out treats and essential items to people in the area.

The Oxmoor Community Group handed out treats and essential items to people in the area. - Credit: HUNTS POST

There were also youth superstar awards, summer treats, Easter and Christmas gifts. Patrick also set up the Oxmoor Community Fridge to ensure surplus food from supermarkets was redirected into the community.

where it is needed, working with local councils to provide public health language videos about the virus, testing and vaccinations, carrying out shielding welfare checks to clinically extremely vulnerable residents and working closely with all partner agencies to ensure the right support was put in place where it was needed most.

His nomination read: "Patrick has been hands on with his sleeves rolled up deep in the heart of the community since the start of the pandemic and is still going.

"I have witnessed first hand how this has helped community members who have been struggling with the lockdowns, lack of support, isolation and crippling fear. We have supported the most vulnerable members in our community and without the work and effort Patrick put into this response there would have been a great deal of suffering within our community."

Susan Simpson, Godmanchester Timebank

Susan worked tirelessly during the entire time of lockdown with coordinating the needs of those in Godmanchester and anyone that could help.

During this time she was going through enormous personal issues but never ever let that deter her from looking after the needs of others.

The Trustees of the Time Bank says she coordinated approximately 1,800 requests from vulnerable people and made sure that all these requests were met.

Some were the delivery of multiple deliveries of food, prescriptions, etc.

Her nomination read: "Susan worked only for the good of the community and made sure the needs of everyone were met at all times. A champion of the community."

Tish Peek, the Hemingford Hub

From a standing start, the Hemingford Hub made a real difference to the lives of people in the community. The hub was set up to support vulnerable people in Hemingford Abbots and Hemingford Grey.

Members of the Hemingford Hub.

Members of the Hemingford Hub. - Credit: HEMINGFORD HUB

The hub provided grocery deliveries, hot meals, collection of prescriptions, IT assistance including the loan of equipment, and regular contact for the vulnerable and isolated. It also liaised with local surgeries and community groups to help identify those who needed assistance and sensitively contacting them to offer support.


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