Yorkshire Times
A Voice of the Free Press
9:15 AM 14th November 2023

Dedicated Leeds-Based Charity Awarded Royal Recognition For Their Work

Flourishing Families Leeds staff with award cards
Flourishing Families Leeds staff with award cards
A local Leeds charity’s outstanding work to fight the destructive effects of poverty has been recognised with a royal award. It has just been announced that Flourishing Families Leeds has received the King’s Award for Voluntary Service, the highest award a charity can receive in the UK and equivalent to an MBE. The charity works at the heart of the most deprived communities in Leeds, equipping families with the skills needed to flourish. Their aim is to transform futures by providing support to enable the whole family to thrive.

CEO of Flourishing Families Leeds, Kate Colbrook, said:
“We are absolutely thrilled and honoured to receive the King’s Award for Voluntary Service. It recognises the incredible dedication of our army of volunteers who work tirelessly to make a difference and change lives. We couldn’t do what we do without them. And this work is so worth it when I think of a 9-year-old girl in one of our groups who said, ‘I thought I was a nobody but now I’m a somebody.’ She is one of 1 million UK children who experienced destitution last year – meaning their families could not afford to adequately feed, clothe or keep them warm. Our charity exists to change the futures of these children and their families.”

Flourishing Families Leeds cookery volunteer
Flourishing Families Leeds cookery volunteer
The charity’s activities include family cookery clubs which address the challenges of food poverty and poor nutrition by teaching families to cook healthy, low-cost meals from scratch.

They run a family literacy programme to counter the enormously negative effects of low family literacy which can trap people in poverty. Mentoring groups for primary school children deal with wellbeing and mental health issues, while community events, parent support groups and activities for young people aim to counteract social isolation.

Flourishing Families Leeds cookery club
Flourishing Families Leeds cookery club
Flourishing Families Leeds is one of 262 charities, social enterprises and voluntary groups to receive the prestigious award this year.

The King’s Award for Voluntary Service recognises outstanding work by local charities to benefit their communities.

It was created in 2002 to celebrate Queen Elizabeth II’s Golden Jubilee and, following his accession, His Majesty The King emphasised his desire to continue the Award. Flourishing Families Leeds will receive the award crystal and certificate from the Lord-Lieutenant of West Yorkshire next year, when a party will be held to thank volunteers.

The work of the charity is continuing to grow, with over 800 people being supported in the last year alone.

Kate Colbrook said:
“There are over 40,000 children in Leeds facing desperate poverty. This amazing award is a catalyst to build on our success and see many more lives and futures transformed.”

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