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Points of Light: June 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 June 2015 (the numbering continues from March’s winners):

254. Dot Naylor (Chelmsford)

Dot, 81, began karate in 1965, but finding no classes open to women she campaigned for a female course and started training alongside 2 others. In 1966, she co-founded the Karate Union of Great Britain and opened her first karate club, with the help of her husband Charles, in 1967. One of the first women to achieve a black belt, Dot has coached thousands of children in the martial art and is still a teacher at her club in Chelmsford.

255. Freddie Farmer (West Wickham)

Freddie, 10, was born with cerebral palsy but refused to let it stop him achieving his dreams. He helped raise £400,000 to create the Freddie Farmer Foundation Physiotherapy Centre, which uses ground-breaking equipment known as “the spider” to support children to walk again. In just over 3 years, hundreds of people have taken part in a variety of activities, from climbing Kilimanjaro to a marathon 70s disco event.

256. Madison Glinski (Cornwall)

Ten year old Madison has raised more than £40,000 by busking with her violin to support a hospice for terminally ill children. She set a £500 fundraising target after visiting the Little Harbour Hospice, but beat this with the help of generous Cornwall crowds. She recently set herself a new target of £50,000.

257. Natasha Jones (Hampshire)

Ava-Mai was just 11 weeks old when she stopped breathing, but her mother Natasha was able to prevent a tragedy and save her life by administering CPR. Natasha went on to found Baby Resuscitation to provide affordable resuscitation training to small groups of parents across the south coast. This has already helped 600 parents — 2 of whom have used the skills they learned to save their children’s lives.

258. John Langley (Bridlington)

John, 80, is celebrating a decade of volunteering his hairdressing skills at a local hospice for the terminally ill. He began his career in 1955 and set up his own salon. After retiring in 2005, he has dedicated his time to volunteering at St Catherine’s Hospice. The hospice provides specialist care for people with life-limiting illnesses across Scarborough, Whitby, Ryedale, Bridlington and Driffield.

259. Yvonne Weinling (Essex)

For the past 11 years Yvonne has helped hundreds of young and vulnerable people by providing advice and support to those in police custody. She works with vulnerable people who don’t have a parent or family member at the police station to make sure they understand what happens after they have been arrested, and to communicate with police. Known locally as the fourth emergency service, Yvonne often works at short notice and late at night to make sure young people don’t feel alone or unable to cope.

260. Sheila Rollinson (Derby)

Sheila first got involved in grassroots ladies football as a teenager in Coventry, and founded the Beacon Wanderers when she moved to Derby in 1978. The club later became Derby County Ladies Football Club. Sheila’s dedication and tireless enthusiasm have seen the club grow to 7 junior squads and 2 senior ones. Her coaching has helped to inspire hundreds of women to keep fit and enjoy sport.

261. Carol Baker (Leigh)

Over 22 years ago Carol signed up as her local rugby club’s safeguarding officer and has since gone on to tutor others. She now supports 51 clubs, helping make sure over 6,000 young people across Lancashire are able to enjoy rugby. Carol helped recruit ‘The Pack’ of volunteers for the 2015 Rugby World Cup and will also be a member of The Pack herself.

262. Meg Bhari (Kingston)

Meg was diagnosed with a brain tumour in 2011. Despite being in and out of hospital, Meg launched Believe in Magic in the same year, aged just 16. The charity arranges once in a lifetime experiences for young children facing similar tough times. Meg has helped grant wishes for over 500 children and their families, for example sending a terminally ill child and their family to Disneyland Paris.

263 & 264: Anne and Chris Deeth (Derbyshire)

Anne and Chris have volunteered at the Midland Railway Trust for 34 years. When its manager sadly passed away they took it upon themselves to keep the unique tourist attraction on track. Over the years they have dressed in period costumes for guided tours, managed the Trust’s budget, organised events, chaired committees and developed the museum. They’ve also found time for their passion of restoring old railway carriages.

265. Nigel Vines (Ascot)

The National Trust identified volunteer Nigel Vines as the driving force behind preparing its Runnymede site for the 800th anniversary of the signing of the Magna Carta. John led other volunteers and corporate groups to make sure the historical site looked its best while preserving the wildlife habitat it offers.

266. Lynne Symonds (Norfolk)

Retired teacher Lynne Symonds has led the Wulugu Project for over 23 years, helping over 250,000 children in the most deprived areas of Ghana get an education. Lynne has used innovative schemes, like loans to girls families and building hostels alongside vocational schools, to give girls as well as boys the chance to learn. In many of the 40 primary schools she has helped build or refurbish, there are now equal numbers of girls and boys.

267. LeighAnne Hedges (Plymouth)

LeighAnne Hedges identified a need for clothes small enough to fit children born prematurely who pass away. Having had her own stillborn child and seeing many bereaved parents in her job as a funeral director, LeighAnne began making small clothes for bereaved families. She has now sent them to over 3,000 families around the world and runs a support group.

268. Dan Ellis (Whitley Bay)

Dan, a cinema enthusiast, set up a local community cinema to help residents who couldn’t travel to the nearest cinema 7 miles away. Inspired by an idea from the 1930s, Jam Jar Cinema still offers free entry to under 18s and over 60s who bring along a jam jar. It has become a centre of the community, also running a café on the site and offering people the chance to gain work experience. More than 19,000 people have visited since it opened in September 2013.

269 & 270: Laura and John Young (East Lothian)

Laura and John lost their first daughter, Verity, to cancer when she was 8 years old. Having seen first-hand the experience of a sick child, they set up art therapy centres in 6 hospitals and 2 hospices in Scotland and Great Ormond Street Hospital in London. Art therapy can help children understand and express what they are going through, as well as taking their minds off it.

271. Mike Field (Bromsgrove)

Mike, 79, spent a decade transporting a windmill from its home in Warwickshire to the Avoncroft Museum of Historic Buildings. He’s also worked on restoring and maintaining it for 20 years.Through his volunteering, thousands of children visited the windmill and learned about an important part of Britain’s great industrial heritage. His work has also given many other people the opportunity to volunteer with him and learn new skills.

272. Mark Healey (London)

Mark founded the 17-24-30 Facebook group in April 2009 to mark the tenth anniversary of the London nail bomb attacks in Brixton, Brick Lane and Soho – bombings motivated by racism and homophobia. In the same year, he organised a candlelit vigil in Trafalgar Square in response to the homophobic murder of Ian Baynham. Mark also set up National Hate Crime Awareness Week, which takes place in October to address all forms of hate crime.

273. Rhea Kara (London)

Nine year old Rhea, moved by the experience of a classmate suffering from the debilitating Rett syndrome, decided to do something to help her. Last year she set out to sell 100 paintings in 100 days to fundraise for Reverse Rett – the main charity for the disease. She sold 166 paintings, raising more than £4,000, and will be repeating the challenge to raise even more money.

274 & 275: Seirian Sumner and Nathalie Pettorelli

Dr Sumner and Dr Pettorelli founded Soapbox Science in 2010 to provide inspirational female science role models and make women in research more visible. Throughout the summer they organise leading female scientists to give free lectures and demonstrations in public places, from London’s South Bank to Belfast’s Botanic Gardens.

276. Louise Fetigan (Dorset)

Louise, a former soldier and now military wife, saw how upsetting and confusing her young daughter Maddison found it when her father went overseas. As a result, she set up the charity My Daddy is a Soldier Adventures. This organises activities to bring military families together, including sports days, music events and a monthly weekend camping trip for 400 families in Surrey. She has also developed support materials, such as ‘separation packs’, to help children understand their parent’s absence.

277. Kate Laine-Toner (Bristol)

Kate set up a support group for families of autistic children in 2012 shortly after her daughter was diagnosed with autism. Bristol Autism Support has helped over 500 families with advice and training, as well as organising activities for children and families.

278 & 279: Jim and Sue Houghton (Desford)

Jim and Sue transformed a rundown field into a sports centre for the whole community with a football pitch, tennis courts, gym and bowling green. They now lead a team of 50 volunteers to help over 900 people a week use the Sport in Desford centre, from Scouts to a karate club.

The next Points of Light award winners can be found on the July 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 June 2015
Last updated 30 June 2015 + show all updates
  1. Added recipients 278 & 279: Jim and Sue Houghton.
  2. Added recipient 277: Kate Laine-Toner.
  3. Added recipient 276: Louise Fetigan.
  4. Added recipients 274 & 275: Seirian Sumner and Nathalie Pettorelli.
  5. Added recipient 273: Rhea Kara.
  6. Added recipient 272: Mark Healey.
  7. Added recipient 270: Mike Field.
  8. Added recipients 269 & 270: Laura and John Young.
  9. Added recipient 268: Dan Ellis.
  10. Added recipient 267: LeighAnne Hedges
  11. Added recipient 266: Lynne Symonds.
  12. Added recipient 265: Nigel Vines.
  13. Added recipients 263 & 264: Anne and Chris Deeth
  14. Added recipient 262: Meg Bhari.
  15. Added recipient 261: Carol Baker.
  16. Added recipient 259: Sheila Rollinson.
  17. Added recipient 258: Yvonne Weinling.
  18. Added recipient 257. John Langley.
  19. Added recipient 257: Natasha Jones.
  20. Added recipient 256: Madison Glinski.
  21. Added recipient 255: Freddie Farmer.
  22. First published.