Preston and South Ribble Street Pastors have been granted the Queen’s Award for Voluntary Service.Advertisement
This award was created by Her Majesty in 2002 to celebrate the anniversary of the Queen’s Coronation recognising excellence in voluntary activities carried out by groups in the community.
Set up as part of a national team in 2003, the Preston group are trained volunteers from local churches who step out into the community to help people on the streets by caring, listening and helping them.
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Usually on patrol from 10pm – 4am on Friday – Saturday, the group are led by a local coordinator and have support from local churches and community groups in partnership with the police, local council and other statutory agencies.
Ian Higginbotham, the current Chairman, and one of the four volunteers who have been members from the outset in 2008, said:
“It is an understatement to say that the Street Pastor team members who’ve served on the streets of our city for the past 10 years are absolutely thrilled to receive this award.
“We are ordinary folk with a passion to show the love of God in practical ways on our streets.
“We’ve helped a lot of people get safely home after a night out, either by giving out flip flops, water to drink, and in extreme cases arranging a taxi.
“We’ve helped vulnerable people in drink who were unable to help themselves – saving valuable police time and sharing love and grace with those in need.
“It is very gratifying to be stopped in the street later by those we have helped, who want to thank us.”
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You can keep up to date with Preston and South Ribble Street Pastors by following the Facebook Page and website.
Do you know Preston and South Ribble Street Pastors? What do you think about them being awarded the Queen’s Award? Let us know in the comments below