Carers in Bedfordshire’s former chair, Anne Grant has received an MBE in the New Year’s Honours list for services to the charity.
The award was made in recognition of Anne’s unwavering commitment to the needs of unpaid carers across Bedfordshire, principally through her work with Carers in Bedfordshire.
Anne joined the charity soon after it was founded by Yvonne Clark in 2004 , volunteering as a telephone befriender and a trustee.
From here, Anne went on to be chair of the charity from 2010 to 2017 and she oversaw a period of great change as the organisation evolved into becoming the well-established and respected charity that it is today.
On the news of her honour, Anne said, “During the 13 years I was on the board and the seven years as chair I saw Carers in Bedfordshire’s amazing growth into a professionally run organisation which still retains the family feel for staff and carers alike.
“I feel hugely privileged to have been associated with such a vibrant and much needed organisation alongside caring for my husband.”
Anne herself has been a carer for her husband, Forbes, for 28 years since he suffered a stroke, leaving him tetraplegic without speech.
Anne is a role model, not only as a carer but also for her contribution to the local community in R enhold and for the leadership she showed whilst on the Board of Carers in Bedfordshire.
Paying tribute to Anne’s contribution to the charity, Carers in Bedfordshire chair, Emma Wilkinson said, “Anne has drawn on her personal experience as a family carer to help many others in Bedfordshire.
“It is testimony to Anne’s warmth as a person as well as her determination, that carers should get the best support available through the charity’s services: information, peer support, training and advice.
“Anne ensured that these services retain a personal feel whilst being delivered in a professional and effective way.
“We are thrilled that Anne is being recognised for the important work she has done for family carers.
“ She has been instrumental in creating a sustainable support organisation to meet the needs of the growing number and diversity of carers in Bedfordshire.”
Carers in Bedfordshire supports unpaid carers who provide vital support to their family or friends who may be frail, ill, disabled or have mental health or addiction problems.
This work is predominantly funded through Bedford Borough Council, Central Bedfordshire Council and the local NHS Commissioning Group.
“The charity continues to be driven by carers’ needs as we remain governed by persons, like Anne, who have been or are currently in a caring role themselves,” said Emma.