Aftercare team leader Sarah Barker has won a double award for her volunteer work with the Eve Brook Scholarship Fund over many years.
Sarah won one of 15 Shining Star awards presented by the City of Birmingham’s Directorate for People to workers in adult and children’s care, at a ceremony at the Botanical Gardens. But she also won a special People’s Choice Award, voted for during the event by the people attending the awards, including other winners.
Sarah leads a team of eight aftercare advisors, who help young people who have been in foster or residential care in Birmingham. As an increasing number of care-leavers go on to higher education – currently 70, 10% of the care-leaving population – her work overlaps with the Fund’s, and she has been vital to our recruitment of young people who want to go to university but need our help.
But Sarah has also helped the Fund as a volunteer, attending Trust meetings, taking minutes, assessing applications, and liaising with young people and their aftercare workers. She is also a member of the Trust’s Fundraising Committee, and participates fully and energetically in our fundraising activities, from our spring curry night, via our summer party to our Christmas quiz in December.
Sarah’s first award was for “making a difference to an individual’s life or circumstances as a volunteer”. She received both her awards from Birmingham’s Strategic Director for People, Peter Hay, who praised her long-term endeavours for the Fund and the young people it helps.
Eve Brook Scholarship Fund Chair David Edgar attended the awards, and commented: “Everyone involved with the Fund will be delighted with Sarah’s awards. She has been absolutely indispensible to the Fund, both in her practical work, and the sage advice she gives us on our grants. The awards are an acknowledgement of the importance of the Fund in encouraging care-leavers to fulfil their potential at University. But, even more, they are a mark of Sarah’s incredible work commitment to the Fund and its work”.