‘Expertise and commitment ensure the future of the charity and its very special clients’

Jun 02, 2020

Helen Whalley, who nominated MK SNAP, and her brother Matthew.

LEARNING disability charity MK SNAP has been awarded the Queen’s Award for Voluntary Service.

MK SNAP’s chief executive Angela Novell said: “The Queen’s Award for Voluntary Service is an incredible recognition of our volunteers and their dedication to transforming the lives of people with learning disabilities.”

MK SNAP started almost three decades ago. Parents, whose children had nowhere to attend after special school, started the learning and skill-building charity in Kiln Farm with the support of Milton Keynes Community Foundation. Today over 140 people with learning and physical disabilities attend MK SNAP.

It was nominated by Helen Whalley in recognition of the support her brother Matthew Fegan has received at MK SNAP. “I am really happy to hear this amazing news,” she said.

Peter Wilson, a former charity trustee, who dedicated his time, expertise and financial support to the charity with his wife, Jane, said: “It is a great honour that has been awarded for the outstanding work and commitment of the trustees, team and volunteers whose expertise and commitment ensure the future of the charity and its very special clients.”  

Volunteers and the generosity of the Milton Keynes community raised £1 million towards MK SNAP’s purpose-built Walnut Tree centre opened in July 2008. Each year MK SNAP provides CSR days for over 135 volunteers from across the business community, equating to over 2,000 volunteering hours. 

Every day volunteers play a vital role in enabling people with learning and physical disabilities to take part in the skill-building sessions at MK SNAP and gain valuable skills and confidence to live a rich, purposeful and happy life.

Volunteer Norma Evans said: “Being a volunteer is extremely rewarding and appreciated by the learners and the organisation. They make you feel like one of the family. I’d encourage anyone with a few hours to spare to try it.”

Fellow volunteer Geraldine Thomas added: “My heart wants to make a difference in the learners’ lives but it is the learners that make a difference in my life, my second family.” 

Joanna Millington-Wallace said: “As a regular volunteer at MK SNAP, I help in the learners’ classes, which are always interesting and fun for learners, teachers and volunteers alike. It is very gratifying when one of the learners masters a new skill and we can see their confidence growing.”

To support the volunteers and work of MK SNAP visit https://mksnap.org/get-involved/

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