On 4th October, MHA and GAVO came together to celebrate the inaugural Monmouthshire Volunteer Awards.

The awards recognise and celebrate the amazing communities and people who work tirelessly to help our communities thrive and make Monmouthshire a wonderful place to live.

The awards replace MHA’s Making a Difference Awards and GAVO’s Volunteer Achievement Awards – making them even bigger and better.  

The winners were kept secret until the day when they were announced at a celebration dinner at the fabulous Gateway Church, Abergavenny. The nominations were shortlisted by a small panel of colleagues and stakeholders.

Check out our video from the night:

John Keegan, MHA CEO said:

“MHA understands the importance of recognising the work of all the unsung heroes who are the glue that holds communities together. We know that individuals and communities have been under extreme pressure in the last 12 months with the cost-of-living crisis but through all the challenges we have seen organisations, individuals and communities come together to embrace and protect some of the most vulnerable in society.


It has been a pleasure to hold this evening’s awards in partnership with GAVO – thank you to all the wonderful nominees, their nominators and everyone involved in organising this event.”

Stephen Tiley, Gwent Association of Voluntary Organisations (GAVO) CEO said:

“It was with immense pride and gratitude we held the inaugural joint Monmouthshire Volunteer Awards with MHA, at the wonderful Gateway Church tonight. This evening was an opportunity to recognise those who have selflessly dedicated their time, expertise, and heart to make a profound impact on the lives of others. Thank you for joining us in celebrating the remarkable achievements of our community heroes.”

Congratulations to all our winners and thank you to everybody who took part by nominating. Thank you also to Isla Arendell and Zoë Perry for their fantastic hosting, The Sunshine Singers for their wonderful singing, Sugarloaf Catering for the delicious food.

Introducing the MVA Winners 2023: 

 You can read their inspirational stories here: MVA 2023 Booklet

Community Champion Award 

Highly Commended – The TogetherWORKS Volunteers  

Winner – Bonnie Russel 


Best Group or Initiative Award 

Joint Winners – iConnect Digital Volunteers and Gateway Community Café  


Inspirational Young Person Award  

Highly Commended – Amelia Lexi Jones  

Winner – Noah Herniman  


Trustee and Director Award  

Highly Commended – Sue Kingdom and Tim Ryan  

WinnerPenny Simcock  


Environmental Award  

Highly Commended – Transition Monmouth Community Fridge  

WinnerRepair Café Abergavenny 


Most Inspirational Journey Award  

Highly Commended – Matthew Alderson  

WinnerFran Kenny 


Health & Wellbeing Award 

Highly Commended – Jem Jenkins-Jones  

Winner – Spiro Tanti and Richard Langford-Johnson  


Outstanding Contribution to MHA Award 

Highly Commended – Alistair Clarke  

Winner – Laura Cousins  


Community Inclusivity Award  

Winner – Dance Time 4 All  


Volunteer of the Year Award 

Highly Commended – Virginia Baldwin  

Winner – Pam Wheatley  

High Sheriff Award 

presented by The High Sheriff of Gwent, Professor Simon J Gibson CBE DL  

Winner – Ginny Baldwin