Press release

Make a Difference wins Prime Minister’s Big Society Award

This news article was published under the 2010 to 2015 Conservative and Liberal Democrat coalition government

Make a Difference - a project that inspires young people in Milton Keynes to better their lives and those around them through positive action and volunteering is the latest winner of the Prime Minister's Big Society Award.

Make a Difference - a project that inspires young people in Milton Keynes to better their lives and those around them through positive action and volunteering is the latest winner of the Prime Minister’s Big Society Award.

The community interest company has engaged over 3000 young people in five years and secured over £1 million in funding for numerous projects. Successes include the regeneration of the former Bus Station - the Buszy - in Central Milton Keynes, now regarded as the city’s premiere youth and community hub. They have also worked to improve youth offending services, set up a youth volunteer led disabled youth club and helped improve local sports, arts and heritage services for the community.

The Prime Minister said on the award win:

Congratulations to everyone at Make a Difference for the work you do to change people’s lives. It is projects like yours that inspire me and make me more determined than ever to deliver the Big Society. I passionately believe that we need a stronger society where people volunteer more, give more and take more control of their lives - taking the lead to improve local services. Make a Difference is a great example of the creativity and innovation we have in this country that can deliver a better Britain.

Denise Davis-Boreham, CEO of Make a Difference said:

We are absolutely delighted to have won this Award. It’s an honour not only for the organisation and staff but for all our young volunteers and the young people who benefit from our services. This Award demonstrates that young people can make a real difference and a positive contribution to the Big Society. This is a challenging yet exciting time for Make a Difference as we embark on new social enterprise activities at the Buszy and work towards sustainability. Receiving this Award will not only help raise our profile and showcase the work we do but will also encourage more young people to get involved and make a difference.

More information on Make a Difference can be found at: http://www.mad-uk.org & http://www.thebuszy.com/

More on the Big Society Awards:

The Prime Minister recently launched a new weekly award that recognises the best examples of the Big Society in action taking place all around the country.

As well as celebrating the fantastic work already being carried out across the country, the Prime Minister hopes that the Big Society Awards will inspire many more people to get involved in their community.

The Prime Minister said:

There are some amazing projects and remarkable voluntary work going on in towns and cities up and down the country, by all kinds of organisations from large enterprises to tiny grassroots schemes and inspirational individuals.

These awards are a chance to pay tribute to those making a valuable contribution to their community, the real champions of the Big Society, but perhaps more importantly, I hope they will motivate many others to take action, get involved and drive change in their area.

Individuals, businesses, charities, community groups and other organisations are all eligible if they illustrate the Big Society in action.

These might be:

  • People or groups who are bringing their community together and helping to give people more power to take decisions and shape their area
  • People who are transforming our public services, staff setting up their own cooperatives, or new providers or frontline staff finding innovative ways to deliver better services to the public
  • Or people who are giving their time and money to help others, the unsung heroes changing lives in every neighbourhood of the country.

People can submit nominations via the No 10 website.  Nominees will then go through a selection process which will eventually involve a panel of previous winners and individuals from civil society organisations, Government and the private sector.

Award winners will receive a certificate from the Prime Minister and will be invited to a regular Big Society Award Winners Reception at Downing Street.

To nominate a Big Society Award winner visit: /bigsocietyawards

(http://www.number10.gov.uk/news/press-notices/2011/01/foodcycle-wins-prime-minister%e2%80%99s-big-society-award-60038/attachment/big-society-award-3001)