Mother awarded MBE for plethora of volunteer work in Queen’s Birthday Honours
PUBLISHED: 12:02 10 October 2020 | UPDATED: 12:28 10 October 2020
A Portishead mother has been awarded an MBE for her outstanding services to the Samaritans and Suicide Prevention.
Maggie Cameron, aged 62, has been recognised for her dedication to the charity in Bristol who has worked more than full-time on a voluntary basis for more than ten years.
The mother-of-seven appeared alongside hundreds of unsung heroes of the coronavirus pandemic in the Queen’s Birthday Honours list for 2020, which recognises the outstanding achievements of people in the UK.
The list, which was due to be published in June, had been postponed to recognise those who played crucial roles in the country’s response to coronavirus in the first months of the pandemic.
Maggie said: “When I joined the Samaritans, I found it fascinating. Just being able to talk openly about suicide, the space to talk and get to that place to save their lives, I find it so interesting to make a difference to someone’s life.
“When I was director, I opened an unsigned card from a member of the public, which said ‘my son is here this week because you spoke to him last week’. It could have been any Samaritans volunteer from across the country, but that kind of feeling that you could really make a difference to someone’s life is very touching.
“It’s been busier than normal for the Samaritans during the pandemic, there are an amazing branch of people in Bristol who just get on with it.
“I’m delighted that someone felt to nominate me for an MBE. My husband Don and my children, Allan, Louise, Tom, Dave, John, Andy and Wills have been tremendously supportive, and while I find volunteering with the Samaritans enjoyable, I will carry on to do it.”
Maggie delivers workplace training on behalf of Samaritans to employees of Clifton Suspension Bridge, railways, Department for Work and Pensions, youth training cadets and minority support groups.
She is also a member of various Bristol suicide prevention groups, has helped new Samaritans join and been involved with Step by Step, a support service helping schools prepare for and recover from a suspected or attempted suicide.
Maggie started volunteering for Shout, a free, confidential, 24/7 text support service last year and was awarded the Bristol Lord Mayor’s Medal for her exceptional contribution to the work of the city’s Samaritans in 2017.
CEO of Samaritans, Ruth Sutherland, said: “I am delighted Maggie’s been recognised for her outstanding contribution to Samaritans. I would like thank her for her inspiring efforts and congratulate her on her thoroughly deserved accolade.
“We value all our volunteers and know our service wouldn’t be possible without their time and dedication, who go above and beyond to provide emotional support to people in need during these incredibly difficult times.”
To volunteer with Weston Samaritans, log on to www.samaritans.org/support-us/volunteer/
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