Volunteers Margaret Coutts, Maggie Cameron and Geraint Thomas have been recognised for their outstanding contributions to Samaritans
Samaritans is delighted to celebrate the news that three of its volunteers have been awarded prestigious accolades in the most recent Queen’s Birthday Honours’ list.
Margaret Coutts, from Falkirk, has been awarded a British Empire Medal (BEM) for services to the Falkirk and Central Scotland Samaritans, having celebrated her 50th anniversary as a volunteer last year.
Margaret said: “It’s been a privilege to be there to listen to people at some of the most difficult moments and my 50 years as a volunteer have shown me just how powerful a simple conversation can be.
“I couldn’t believe that I’ve been chosen to receive this honour. I’d like to say a big thank you to Vikki, my branch director for nominating me! It was a huge surprise and I’m truly touched by this recognition for something that has been and continues to be such a special part of my life.”
Maggie Cameron, from Portishead, has received a Member of the Order of the British Empire (MBE) for services to Samaritans and suicide prevention having volunteered at the Bristol Branch for over 11 years.
Speaking about receiving her MBE, Maggie said: “It’s really exciting! I was told in May because they were initially going to be announced in June but were then postponed. I was asked not to share it with anyone, which I haven’t – not even my husband or my family! It’s been a long time, so my Samaritans confidentiality training kicked in.
“Volunteering at Samaritans is incredibly rewarding, you never know quite what to expect when you pick up the phone but it’s great to be able to try and support that person.”
Geraint Thomas, from Swansea, has received a British Empire Medal (BEM) for services to Samartians, Mountain Rescue and Disadvantaged People in South West Wales.
On receiving his BEM, Geraint Thomas said: “I am honoured to have been awarded the British Empire Medal. As a listening volunteer at Swansea Samaritans, late at night when callers have no one else they can speak with, I’m proud to be part of this excellent team.”
Ruth Sutherland, CEO of Samaritans, said: “I am absolutely delighted to hear that Margaret, Maggie and Geraint have been recognised for their outstanding contribution to Samaritans. I’d like to congratulate each of them on their thoroughly deserved accolades and thank them for their inspiring efforts.
“We value the contribution of all our volunteers and know that our service wouldn’t be possible without their time and dedication. Samaritans’ volunteers have gone above and beyond to ensure that we can continue to provide emotional support to people in need across the UK and Ireland during these incredibly difficult times.”
Anyone can contact Samaritans FREE - throughout the pandemic - from any phone on 116 123, even a mobile without credit. This number won’t show up on your phone bill. Or you can email [email protected] or visit www.samaritans.org.