Wellingborough man nominated for Volunteer of the Year award

Andrew Richardson, pictured bottom right, with a shipment of aid for Sierra Leone
Andrew Richardson, pictured bottom right, with a shipment of aid for Sierra Leone

A volunteer who dedicates more than 60 hours every week to a charity which turns donations into valuable resources has been nominated for a top award.

Andrew Richardson is one of five people nominated for the Guardian’s Volunteer of the Year 2015 award for his work at the Phoenix Resource Centre in Wellingborough.

The online citation for Andrew’s nomination says: “Andrew’s nominator says he dedicates his life to this charity selflessly.

“He works 60-plus hours per week for the organisation because he feels so strongly for the cause.

“The charity, which he established, takes donations from businesses that would otherwise be put into landfill and redistributes them to those in need.

“The charity is a local hub for the county’s food banks and co-ordinates distribution.

“It also sends aid overseas - it recently helped Ebola-stricken contries and has sent aid to Nepal.

“It is said that all of this would not be possible without Andrew’s dedication.”

The Phoenix Resource Centre is on the Finedon Road industrial estate in Wellingborough and has volunteers aged between 11 and 75.

They give up their time to sort through items given to the charity to recycle or re-use.

They take in clean usable waste including off-cuts of material, wood and card, surplus stock, end of line items and unwanted goods or returns which would probably end up in landfill instead.

The charity has sent shipments of aid to numerous countries to help people, including Syria, Afghanistan, India, Pakistan and Bangladesh.

For details about the centre and its work, including a discounted resources centre for members including schools and charities, go to www.phoenix-resource-centre.org.uk.

More than 150 nominations were received, but Andrew has made the final five and people can now vote for him to win.

The winner will be rewarded with £200 worth of Love2Shop vouchers.

Voting closes on June 10 at 11.59pm and the winner will be announced on June 12 on the Guardian Voluntary Sector Network.

To vote for Andrew, go to http://www.theguardian.com/voluntary-sector-network/2015/jun/02/volunteer-of-the-year-2015-the-shortlist and scroll to the bottom to register your vote.