Carrickfergus Junior Gateway volunteers honoured by the Queen

Bethany Masters-Armstrong, Lauren Sherwood-Bowes and Joan Christie CVO OBE.
Bethany Masters-Armstrong, Lauren Sherwood-Bowes and Joan Christie CVO OBE.

Carrickfergus Junior Gateway has been presented with the Queen’s Award for Voluntary Service by Joan Christie CVO OBE, Her Majesty’s Lord-Lieutenant for the County of Antrim.

The ceremony at Carrick Castle was also attended by the Mayor of Mid and East Antrim, Cllr Lindsay Millar and her deputy, Cllr Cheryl Johnston.

Julie Stirling, Jackie Pollock and Joan Christie CVO OBE

Julie Stirling, Jackie Pollock and Joan Christie CVO OBE

The Queen’s Award for Voluntary Service is the highest honour given to local volunteer groups across the UK. The group received a certificate signed by the Queen and a domed glass crystal.

Jackie Pollock, Junior Gateway chairperson, said: “Being completely voluntary we could not support our members if it was not for our fantastic leaders who give up their time week after week. Our members’s families provide tremendous encouragement and support to us but having received this external validation is incredible and honours the work that goes into making the group successful”.

Carrickfergus Junior Gateway offers social opportunities for young people with learning disabilities and celebrated their 30th anniversary in 2017. It provides two sessions per week: Saturday mornings for young people aged 6-18, and Thursday evenings for young adults aged 16-30.

Anyone interested in membership or volunteering opportunities should contact the charity through www.carrickjuniorgateway.org.uk