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Mayor of Reigate and Banstead celebrates with Level Up volunteers after scooping an award

The Mayor of Reigate and Banstead invited a team of volunteers to the Town Hall from Raven Housing Trust’s Level Up project, in recognition of the achievements of the project and to celebrate the Mayor’s award they won last year.

The Level Up Redhill Banstead team won a Volunteer Crisis Response Award in the annual Reigate and Banstead Volunteer Awards for their contribution to provide laptops to families in Surrey, who were home schooling during lockdown.

Only two members of the team were able to attend the awards ceremony at the time, so the Mayor, Cllr Jill Bray wanted to invite more members of the team to the Town Hall to celebrate their achievement and thank them in person for the contribution they’d made to the local community.

She said, “Their volunteer award, which was in recognition of the vital work they have been doing to support local families and school children throughout lockdown, was a pleasure to present.”

The award was received last September during a ceremony at the Harlequin Theatre in Redhill. Since January 2021 Level Up have handed out 1100 computers.

Raven Housing Trust, which are based in Redhill, manage over 7000 homes across Surrey and Sussex. They set up Level Up to help families who were unable to afford a computer for their children.

The eleven IT volunteers which refurbished the laptops were Andy and Jo Townsend, Mike Brooker, Lawrence Hassell, Ian Watkinson, Julian Barker, Bill Richards, Chris Grant, Arron Savage, Chavier de Abreu and Martin Saunders.

The six drivers who collected and distributed laptops Neil Hobbs, Garry Brooks, Alistair Watkinson, Dominic Bell, Lisa Levine and Paul Tilley, alongside the four communication volunteers, Barrie Clark, Mike Fox, Karen Munroe and Bob Gunn.

Steve Ward the Digital Inclusion Officer at Raven Housing Trust worked alongside Level Up founder Martin Saunders to scale up the project to cover the whole of Reigate and Banstead in January 2021 due to recognising a lack of support from the government.

He said, “I am delighted that their hard work and dedication have been recognised with this award, which is very well deserved.”

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