For ten terrific, triumphant years, the Evening Times Community Champions awards have celebrated the city’s superheroes.
They are all ages, from all backgrounds, and live in neighbourhoods across the north, south east and west of Glasgow.
But they have one thing in common – they work hard, often quietly behind the scenes, to make life better for others.
They are volunteers and emergency service workers; schoolchildren and pensioners; grass roots coaches and inspirational community leaders – and without them, Glasgow would be a much poorer place.
As we prepare to mark the 10th anniversary of the launch of the most heartwarming event on the city’s calendar, Evening Times Editor Graham Shields sums up why the Community Champions awards continue to be important.
He said: “For a decade, the Evening Times and our generous partners Glasgow City Council, Glasgow Community Planning Partnership, Glasgow Housing Association, Scottish Fire and Rescue and Police Scotland have been proudly giving our city’s most selfless workers their moment in the spotlight. Every year, we are amazed and delighted to see the scope of nominations from every neighbourhood.
“We’re looking forward to hearing about more of Glasgow’s unsung superheroes as we launch the 2017 awards.”
The very first grand final host of the awards was DJ and TV presenter Heather Suttie.
“I’ve been so lucky to host the Community Champion Awards on a number of occasions,” she smiled.
“I remember taking some of my friends along and saying to them – prepare to be amazed, enthralled and entertained by real people doing really magic things across Glasgow.”
Heather, a spirited community activist who says Community Champions inspired her to develop her charity work – she spent several months in Tanzania helping local communities – said she was inspired by the ‘positive power’ people have in their own neighbourhoods.
“The Evening Times has always cultivated a community feeling and these awards really get to the heart of the matter,” she said.
“Each event has all the right elements – oodles of fun, humour, warmth, joy, inspiration and richly deserved recognition for those who only think of others and not themselves, whether it’s a young person instigating change, a senior citizen doing incredible voluntary work or a member of our public services going above and beyond the call of duty.”
She smiled: “It was always a great night too – I remember Lord Provost Bob Winter being unexpectedly ridiculously good fun….”
Bob Winter also has fond memories of the event.
Bob said: “I am delighted that the Community Champions Awards are now a decade old. The success of the awards scheme has exceeded my expectations in terms of the quality of the nominees and the winners and the high level of public support and enthusiasm at the events.
“The grand final in the City Chambers has become one of the year’s most special events and it really captures the spirit of our slogan, People Make Glasgow.”
To get involved in Community Champions 2017, we want to hear your nominations for the following categories – Team Award, Individual Award, Public Services Award, Uniformed Services Award, Senior Award, Young Award, Health and Wellbeing Award and Sports Award.
You can nominate someone you know – perhaps the coach of a local sports club or a hardworking parent, a police officer who has saved lives, a nurse who goes above and beyond the day job or a pensioner who campaigns for better services.
A list of nominees will be published in the Evening Times and on our website in the run up to each event and the finalists, decided by a judging panel made up of representatives from the awards’ partners, will take their place in our hall of fame.
The finalists will be chosen at three events taking place across the city over the coming months. The first heat will be on March 30, for the North East, on June 22 for the South and on October 3 for the North West. The winners from each local event will go through to the glittering grand final in the City Chambers on November 29.
Help the Evening Times and its partners celebrate the passion and pride people have in the city of Glasgow by nominating your local heroes for the 2017 Community Champion Awards. It all kicks off at the first event in the North East on March 30 and nominations must reach us by March 2 – visit www.newsquestscotlandevents.com or email firstname.lastname@example.org. For more information call 0141 302 6018.