Honouring an unsung community hero

23rd January 2020

  • Shelley Eggleston, who helps to run the parent support group Ray of Hope in the north of Sheffield, is the first winner of our David Woodhouse Community Award.

    Funding for the award comes from donations made in memory of David Woodhouse, who tragically died last year. David was husband to Deborah, one of our founding members.

    Presenting the award, Forum trustee Jayne Woodward said: “David Woodhouse was a remarkable man – when he saw something that needed doing, he just did it. He worked tirelessly, without seeking recognition or reward, to improve the outcomes and life chances of vulnerable children and young people. We are so touched that Deborah thought of us when she had just lost David and was going through the worst time of her life.”

    Deborah Woodhouse explained what the award means to her: “Although I am no longer a trustee of the Forum, I still feel part of it. I am proud to have been there from the beginning and helped to set it up. I think the Forum is a fantastic example of women coming together to do things for themselves and their community. It makes me so proud of David, and I can’t think of a better person than Shelley to receive this award. Shelley is incredibly kind and selfless. She cares passionately, not just about her own family, but about others who are in similar difficult situations.”

    Shelley said: “It is lovely to be recognised, but that’s not why I am doing the work I do. I do it because I have been there myself; I remember how overwhelmed and confused I felt when my daughter had just been diagnosed. The help I got from other parents was invaluable, and my daughter wouldn’t be the person she is today without their advice and support. Now I just want to pass it on.”

    Shelley received a trophy, a cheque for £250 and vouchers for a spa experience and a meal.

    The award will be presented annually, and the next round of nominations will open in October 2020.