A CHARITY that has supported over 20 troubled families in Dursley and Cam has been given a prestigious award dedicated to those making a difference in the community.

This year’s Leslie D Gale award was awarded to Home-Start after its army of volunteers have helped 23 families in the area, 12 of which are from Dursley.

The group helps out those needing that extra hand for many reasons, including post-natal illness, disability, bereavement, the illness of a parent or child, or social isolation.

The aim is to help parents boost their confidence and their ability to cope, with four volunteers now working in the Dursley area and making a significant impact.

Co-ordinator Angela Lovegrove received the award from Dursley Mayor Cllr Jane Ball at the annual Dursley Town Council meeting, saying the organisation was deeply-rooted in the community.

“It’s nice to get that recognition," she said.

"Our volunteers work very hard, they support some difficult situations and complicated families as well as some very nice families.

“It’s a charity I am very passionate about. We have any absolutely fantastic group of volunteers.”

Prospective volunteers are trained for 10 weeks so they can ensure that they are placed with the right family, which they work with for nine months on average but can also be with them for many years.

Cllr Ball said: “I have met a lot of the volunteers and they are very dedicated and many of the families are here and they get an awful lot of help.”

The Leslie D Gale award was set up in 1994 as a tribute to the late Mr Gale, who was the last Chairman of Dursley Parish Council and the first Mayor of Dursley.

It recognises both longevity of service and a group or individual’s impact on the community.

Dursley Town Council is now looking for nominations for other awards, including volunteer of the year, business of the year, sportsperson or team of the year and for a young person making a difference in the town.

If you would like to nominate someone or a group for these awards, email Dursley Town Council clerk Helen Bojaniwska on clerk@dursleytowncouncil.gov.uk or call 01453 547758.