Humbled but thank you so very much ❤️🏹

I am aware that this year alone I have been nominated for awards with Archery GB, This Girl Can, Northamptonshire Sport and North Northamptonshire Council, I was privileged to be awarded a Platinum Champion Award by the Royal Voluntary Service in honour of the Queen’s Platinum Jubilee.

I am blessed that people see what I do, what I give and that they take the time to nominate me. This year is not any different to previous years, I receive notifications that I have been nominated for awards or recognition most years. 

Whilst it’s nice to be recognised by the people that choose who gets these awards I am actually always more interested to know who took the time, what did the say, what did I do that they felt was important enough that they would take the time to write it in a nomination, because if I can I like to thank them. 

I don’t always get to find out, for this award I had to fill in a request form, they then contacted the nominator for permission – well today I am blown away, I didn’t get one! I got 5 and not all under the same category!!

I have had details shared from each nomination, it’s not just archery, it’s about working for inclusion, it’s about the time I put in for awareness of epilepsy and the impact on my son and our amazing purple family, it’s work I have and do with Age Uk, NHS, and families who need support. 2 of them have included a lot of what I have done in the last 31 years!! 

Wow, just wow 😮 

It amazes me to read about how people see me. 

I started volunteering at the age of 16. 

At the age of 20 I went through something horrific and I promised myself I would put my life to good use and use it to help others, with no real idea of what that promise meant as I sent it out into the ether.

I am often asked why I give what I do, what do I get out of the hours I put in? 

Well I get to keep that promise to myself, I get to make a difference for others in lots of small ways and it’s different things to different people. 

But when I see someone smile, if someone takes the time to share what I meant, what I have given them or helped them to achieve,it helps me move forward on the days it doesn’t feel like I am achieving anything. It is a privilege to be allowed to take any small part in someone’s life and do any of the things that I have done these 31 years. I struggle to explain it in an answer when asked – why do you do this? 

It’s too big and it’s wrapped up in too many things. 

This week I had someone take the time to ask if I would sit and listen as they told me what they have seen me achieve and how proud of me they are, I have no idea how to answer that, at all. The details they shared – I cried and I got the biggest hugs, maybe, just maybe I am doing ok in my own small way. 

I know what a difference some people have shared with me that my helping them with arrows, sharing them, helping them stay, has made. 

I often get asked about being a coach – no I think my role as cheerleader and encourager are far more important, yes I know that some think those skills belong to a coach too! 

Thank you to those who have celebrated my news this week that I am starting my training as a disability sports coach and learning about adaptive sports. It’s exciting already that some of those working with me for archery are already considering how we can expand our combined offered sports.

I will keep spending my time volunteering and giving my time to keep my promise. 

Integr8Archery and my hybrid club are certainly a big part in enabling me to be able to do that and to allow me to work with others without ever loosing me again.

Thank you to all of those who took the time to message me this week, never do I take your support for granted.