SION Mills Community Forum has scooped a runner-up prize at the IPB Pride of Place Awards in Dublin.
The awards, which recognise the worth that community organisations give to their local areas and the people who come together to shape it, shortlisted the local group following an application process late last year.
Andy Patton from the forum says that they are ‘ecstatic’ with their win.
“I and our chairperson John Forsythe attended the awards last weekend in Dublin and we are absolutely over the moon to have emerged with the runner-up prize,” he said. “I can safely say that, although we didn’t win, there’s absolutely no disappointment at all. John and I spoke about this on the way to Dublin and both agreed we would have been happy with a ‘highly-commended’ certificate. We did actually get one as part of the award but never dreamt that we would have achieved runner-up. It’s a wonderful achievement and everyone involved with the forum, and Sion, are delighted.”
Andy also remarked that receiving the award is especially pleasing, given the forum’s volunteer status.
“These awards recognise community organisations from all over Ireland and the fact that we got as far as we did is a testament to the stellar work we do here,” he said. “Other organisations nominated in the awards all have paid employees, so to get this far with volunteers who gave up their free time to make Sion a better place is wonderful; we truly are punching above our weight!”
The forum works with all sectors of the community, listening, responding and addressing the village’s needs. It offers a range of projects and interventions and represents local residents on various agencies and boards.
Some of the projects undertaken by the forum include mental health and well-being projects for older men and women, a men’s fitness and well-being project, and a youth mental health peer mentoring programme.
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