Honouring our volunteers - The Trees for Life Awards

4th August 2015

Celebrating our Volunteers and Conservation Week Leaders

Volunteers are at the heart of what we do. Each year the Trees for Life Awards celebrate their commitment, where volunteers, Conservation Week Leaders and Trees for Life staff nominate those that have made a real difference to our conservation work throughout the year.

On Friday 3 August, the 4 award winners each received a hand-carved award and the chance to volunteer for free on their next Conservation Week, alongside the official opening ceremony of Trees for Life’s new eco-offices.  The four categories were: 

  • Birch – a young pioneer in forest conservation, aged under 25.
  • Oak – a strong and supportive leader
  • Rowan – a volunteer without whom your experience would not be the same.
  • Scots pine - A keystone in our volunteer programme with long term

Liam Condron (17), our youngest volunteer, received the Birch award. Liam began volunteering with us this year after a change in our policy to include 16 and 17 year olds in our conservation day programme without guardians. Liam’s determination and enthusiasm to volunteer with us has been the driving force for us reassessing our volunteering policy and pushing for the changes to be implemented, opening the door for more young people to be involved with our work.

Gordon McRuvie, winner of the Oak award, has been a volunteer, Conservation Week Leader and Trees for Life supporter for 14 years. He is task-oriented and conscientious but balances that with joy, fun and laughter. He’s a loveable guy, we are sad that he is retiring from leading our Conservation Weeks but glad he will continue to volunteer and support our work. 

Winning the Rowan award, Ian Williams has taken part in 27 conservation days in 2014, the most of any conservation day volunteer. He is a strong and regular presence in our work, and also brings a wealth of knowledge and skills in conservation work. He applies his skills with humour and regularly supports other volunteers to develop their skills with support and encouragement. Ian is also part of our volunteer advisory team, without him this team would not have materialised. He has also facilitated a partnership to develop volunteering days with the National Trust for Scotland, which has lead to joint working days, which Ian will help to lead. 

Roy Turnbull, who has regularly volunteered with Trees for Life for over 2 decades, received the Scots Pine award. He is knowledgeable and experienced in conservation and land management, and is happy to share that with others. He brings a lot of practical and technical skills to the team and is an honest and open character, who is much loved by the team.

Part of the core mission of Trees for Life is to engage people in conservation, to provide a powerful and educational experience that will promote the work of restoration and lead to increased support for the return of the forest. This valuable work would not be possible  without the valuable input and effort of our volunteers who have helped plant over one million trees, now working to expand the forests with a million more.

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