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Double Celebrations For North York Moors Volunteers
Caitlin McCauley, winner in the ‘Young Person of the Year’ category, receiving her award from writer and television presenter Steve Backshall
Volunteers in the North York Moors are celebrating after scooping the top prize in two of the four categories at the National Parks UK Volunteer Awards 2017.

Caitlin McCauley, aged 19 from Richmond, North Yorkshire, achieved the accolade of ‘Young Person of the Year’ following her summer of volunteering with the Education Team at the North York Moors National Park Authority.

Caitlin dedicated her free time to working with groups of children from in and around the Middlesbrough area, leading them on woodland trails and foraging hunts, as well as teaching skills such as compass-reading and shelter building.

The National Park Authority also came top in the ‘Best Project’ category with the Cleveland Way Adoption Scheme – an initiative that sees young families become custodians of their own stretch of the National Trail.

On achieving her award, Caitlin, who is currently studying for a degree in zoology at the University of Lincoln, said:

“I had such a fantastic summer working with more than 200 children and young people in the North York Moors. My favourite activity was definitely ‘bug hunting’. The children often started out rather squeamish, but by the end of the session were gleefully identifying different species.

“I’d urge anybody and everybody to get involved with volunteering. Just find your nearest National Park, get in touch and get out there!”

The Cleveland Way Adoption Scheme involves a year’s commitment to walk, report, survey, improve and enjoy a designated section of the 109-mile National Trail, ensuring it is well looked after for everyone to enjoy.

A family of volunteers working on their ‘adopted’ section of the Cleveland Way
Tammy Andrews, who oversees the Cleveland Way Adoption Scheme at the North York Moors National Park, said:

“We’re over-the-moon that our work with volunteer families has been recognised at a national level. Working with these dedicated and enthusiastic groups is such a privilege. They really get to know their section well and enjoy seeing how the scenery and wildlife changes through the year.”

Also in attendance at the award ceremony was Beaumont family from Danby, who have adopted a 3.4 mile section of the Cleveland Way from Lordstones to Clay Bank.

Jacqui Beaumont said:

“The scheme has fostered a shared experience for my husband and I and our four children. My hope is that through our maintenance and regular patrols, we can give something back so that future generations can also enjoy our beautiful area.”

The awards were presented by BAFTA-winning adventurer, writer and television presenter Steve Backshall, at the Kendal Mountain Festival on Saturday 18 November.

The 2017 National Parks UK Volunteer Awards were supported by Columbia Sportswear and Natural Resources Wales.

For more information about the awards and the other prize-winners, please visit: http://bit.ly/NationalParksVolunteerAwards

Double Celebrations For North York Moors Volunteers, 23rd November 2017, 15:56 PM