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Points of Light: July 2015 winners

The Points of Light award recognises outstanding individuals - people who are making a change in their community and inspiring others.


The following people were given a Points of Light award in July 2015 (the numbering continues from June’s winners):

280. Katee Hui (London)

Katee founded the Hackney Laces Community Club when she realised there were no opportunities for women and girls to play football in her local area. She quickly saw the opportunity to add an ‘off the pitch’ programme. This offers the girls valuable life skills, including help with job applications, training opportunities, work experience placements and mentoring. So far Katee has led a team of 30 volunteers to support over 200 girls, and a second club has partnered with Hackney using the same model.

281. Di Redfern (Fulmer)

Di developed a passion for horses and horse riding from an early age and began volunteering with the South Buckinghamshire RDA group in the late 1960s. RDA (Riding for the Disabled Association) helps people with disabilities to ride horses or ponies, providing therapy, enjoyment and achievement. Since 1974 Di has been the group’s chair, organiser and host. She also played an important role in developing the successful UK Paralympics Dressage Team.

282. Margaret Winnett (Andover)

Margaret started volunteering at Andover Tennis Club in 1975 whilst raising 2 children and working full time as a teacher. Her passion for tennis in the decades since has encouraged thousands of people to play tennis. Margaret is also working with National Citizen Service to train 300 young people in tennis leadership and volunteering, helping them learn new skills and gain confidence and experience.

283. Dr Lorna Hood (Renfrew)

The Very Reverend Dr Lorna Hood was so moved by mothers’ accounts of victims of the Srebrenica Massacre that she joined Remembering Srebrenica. As chair of the charity’s Scotland board, she set up Remembering Srebrenica in Scotland. She also organises events and visits to Srebrenica to make sure lessons are learned and to tackle all forms of intolerance and hatred.

284. Heather Parsons (Southampton)

Heather was inspired by her time in intensive care at Southampton General Hospital to help other patients and families in similar situations. She volunteers 5 days per week, running a refreshment, listening and liaison service for families. Heather has also raised more than £30,000 to fund specialist therapies.

285. Paul Loftus (Cumbria)

Paul created an annual fundraising cycle challenge in memory of his friend Fred Whitton who died of cancer. The Fred Whitton Cycle Challenge has raised over £1 million for charity and is enjoyed by thousands of riders every year.

286. Viv Bourne (Suffolk)

Viv helped to set up Success After Stroke and has volunteered there for 16 years. The charity, based in East Anglia, now has 22 volunteers helping over 80 people. As well as offering lessons in, for instance, art, nordic walking, riding and sailing, therapists provide speech therapy and physical rehabilitation to stroke patients.

287. Callum Fairhurst (Cambridgeshire)

Callum set up the Liam Fairhurst Foundation with his parents Mark and Sarah after his brother Liam died of cancer in 2009. He has raised £150,000 so far through a number of physical challenges. These include cycling from John O’Groats to Lands End and completing a virtual row across the English Channel. Callum launched his latest challenge – the Challenge 360 round the world bike ride – from 10 Downing Street on 10 July.

288. Julie Guthrie (Billericay)

Julie spotted an opportunity to raise money for Cancer Research UK and give supporters a way to congratulate Race for Life runners as they cross the finish line. She has travelled to races around the country selling flowers that people can give to runners and has inspired a further 15 people to join Jules’ Jewels and sell in their local area. So far they have sold over 75,000 flowers and raised over £200,000.

289. George Rosenfeld (London)

Sixteen-year-old George believes everyone should have access to clean, safe water. To help achieve this, he has raised nearly £150,000 for WaterAid and is continuing to raise more money. He is also a passionate advocate for the charity, raising awareness of the charity’s work at every opportunity.

290. Sam Roden (Cheshire)

Sam required more than 30 pints of blood to save his life when he was critically ill with pneumonia. When he recovered, he wanted to give back the same life-saving gift. He now completes marathons and other challenges but asks for pledges of blood donations instead of money. He has so far ‘raised’ over 500 pints through Pledge a Pint.

291. Maryam Amatullah (Leicester)

When Maryam took up cycling she realised that many women from ethnic minorities were missing out on the sport she loved – either because of cultural stereotypes or because they didn’t think they could do sport while wearing a hijab. By leading cycle rides for women and helping to set up a women-only cycling club, Maryam has encouraged over 150 women to take up cycling.

292. Izzy Russell (Fowey)

Supporting the local Fowey RNLI station is a family affair for 4-year-old Izzy. Her dad, Adam, is a crewman and her mum, Jodie, volunteers in the gift shop. Izzy wanted to do her bit to help “daddy’s boat” and has raised an impressive £360 by making and selling 100 loom bands, collecting donations and selling badges.

293. Dominique Harrison-Bentzen (Preston)

Homeless man Robbie lent Dominique his last £3 after she lost her wallet and found herself stranded. Inspired by his kindness, Dominique launched a crowd-funding appeal asking for £3 donations. The campaign went viral and she raised over £45,000 for her local homeless charity the Foxton Centre. Dominique now campaigns tirelessly to raise awareness and funding for the Foxton Centre and other charities.

294. Barbara Waterman (Hendon)

Eighty-three year old Barbara has volunteered for over 45 years at Stepney Jewish Community Centre. She has always gone the extra mile for vulnerable, elderly people in her community and offers invaluable support for them.

295 & 296: Samira Magrabi and Liz Wood (Dorset)

Samira and Liz from Dorset wanted to use their professional photography skills to help families of sick children. They created the Butterfly Wishes Network to offer free family portraits for families whose children have life-shortening conditions. They have now inspired 285 other photographers to donate their time and skills, and have given over 100 families beautiful photos they will treasure forever.

297. Tommy Evans (Powys)

Welsh farmer Tommy Evans, 72, has dedicated his life to preserving farming traditions and making sure they are passed on to future generations. As well as being at the heart of his local Young Farmers’ Club and the Royal Welsh Show for over 30 years he has taught generations of future farmers sheep shearing and hedge-laying. These skills are essential to preserve Wales’ proud farming heritage.

298. Callum Farquhar (Dunfermline)

Callum has volunteered with the Scouts for 25 years and has been instrumental in finding Japanese host families for the 3,000 UK scouts taking part in the World Scout Jamboree in Japan this summer. He has organised cultural exchanges between the 2 countries for many years and raised £10,000 to restart scouting in devastated coastal areas of Japan after the tsunami.

299. Iva Barr (Bedfordshire)

Iva began running marathons in her fifties. Now 87, she took part in her 19th London Marathon earlier this year. She has raised nearly £10,000 for the charities she supports and is looking forward to taking part in next year’s marathon.

300. Jaime Thurston (Kingston)

Jaime is the 300th Points of Light winner for setting up the website 52 Lives to change a life every week. She uses the site to highlight requests for help so that her online followers can help her change lives for the better. Jaime has helped more than 700 people, from raising funds for a single mother with cancer to stop her being made homeless to giving 300 birthday presents to critically ill children and helping elderly people move home.

301. Jeff Johnson (Wigan)

Jeff has volunteered at Bryn Badminton club for over 35 years. He is passionate about making the sport inclusive and helps to make sure that people of all abilities are able to enjoy the sport he loves. Jeff has volunteered with the Special Olympics for 7 years and gives hundreds of hours every year to coaching local players.

302 & 303: Mike and Sarah Hagen (Solihull)

Mike and Sarah set up Classrooms in the Clouds to give children in some of the most remote parts of Nepal the chance to get an education. They have now built 26 classrooms that enable children to learn in their local community without having to leave their families and board at schools far away.

304. Dave Barley (Staffordshire)

Dave introduced search and rescue dogs to Staffordshire Search and Rescue Team, helping them to become 1 of 10 nationally accredited teams of volunteers. Dave has given many hours to research and training both with his own dog, Red, and with other team members’ dogs. His efforts help people enjoy Staffordshire’s beautiful countryside knowing that, if anything goes wrong, a top team is on standby to help them out.

The next Points of Light award winners can be found on the August 2015 page. All of the winners can be found via the Points of Light collection page, which brings together all the monthly lists of winners.

Published 1 July 2015
Last updated 31 July 2015 + show all updates
  1. Added 304th winner: Dave Barley.
  2. Added today's winners: Mike and Sarah Hagen.
  3. Added the 301st winner: Jeff Johnson.
  4. Added the 300th Points of Light winner: Jaime Thurston.
  5. Added recipient 299: Iva Barr.
  6. Added recipient 298: Callum Farquhar.
  7. Added recipient 297: Tommy Evans.
  8. Added recipients 295 & 296: Samira Magrabi and Liz Wood.
  9. Added recipient 294: Barbara Waterman.
  10. Added recipient 293: Dominique Harrison-Bentzen.
  11. Added recipient 292: Izzy Russell.
  12. Added recipient 291: Maryam Amatullah.
  13. Added recipient 290: Sam Roden.
  14. Added recipient 289: George Rosenfeld.
  15. Added recipient 288: Julie Guthrie.
  16. Added recipient 287: Callum Fairhurst.
  17. Added recipient 286: Viv Bourne.
  18. Added recipient 285: Paul Loftus.
  19. Added recipient 284: Heather Parsons.
  20. Added recipient 283: Dr Lorna Hood.
  21. Added recipient 282: Margaret Winnett.
  22. Added recipient 281: Di Redfern.
  23. First published.