Voscur Chief Executive recognised with an MBE in Queen’s Birthday Honours 

12 October, 2020

Voscur Chief Executive recognised with an MBE in Queen’s Birthday Honours 

Voscur’s Chief Executive, Sandra Meadows, has been recognised with an MBE in the Queen’s 2020 Birthday Honours list. Her MBE is in recognition of her service to the community of Bristol over 30 years and for her leadership and contribution to Bristol’s Covid-19 emergency response. 

Sandra has worked tirelessly to support Bristol’s voluntary, community and social enterprise (VCSE) organisations to deliver a coordinated and impressive response to the Covid-19 crisis. Examples of Sandra’s work include: 

  • Quickly organising Covid-19 testing for frontline workers and volunteers in VCSE organisations.
  • Working closely with Bristol City Council, Public Health and the business community on planning, mobilisation and deployment of food, medicines, telephone befriending and developing safeguarding support and guidance for volunteers.
  • Championing the need for targeted support for particularly vulnerable communities, especially BAME people. 
  • Working with partner organisations such as Quartet Community Foundation and Black South West Network to ensure frontline VCSE organisations are able to survive.
  • Providing updates, training, guidance and resources to support VCSE organisations in challenging times. 
  • Working with partners to embed the VCSE sector as an essential part of Bristol social and economic future. 

Sandra says,

“I am truly moved to have been awarded an M.B.E.  It’s so affirming to think people value the work I do because, like many in the VCSE sector, lots of it is unseen. 

Wonderful as this Honour is I am, of course, very conscious of the suffering and loss that the pandemic brought with it and send my thoughts and prayers to those who have lost friends and relatives, and also to those who are struggling with the impact of restrictions.

Being a part of Bristol’s Covid19 community response is enormously inspiring.  Bristol mobilised quickly and effectively in ways I have not seen before; acting as ‘One City’, working together.  At Voscur, the team moved very quickly to be ready to support charities and community groups across the city.  We helped lead and co-ordinate the citywide emergency response through 23 community hubs who are at the frontline delivering food, medicines, essential shopping, maintaining human contact with the isolated and even looking after pets!  Every one of those organisations and our volunteers helped to save lives and keep Bristol at the bottom of the table for Covid19 infections.  Our work is not yet done, but we should all feel proud of what we’ve been able to achieve so far.

So, I’m sharing this Honour with my wonderful team, our amazing Trustees and the entire Bristol VCSE sector - from the smallest to the largest organisations and, of course, our dedicated army of volunteers and supporters.  Thank you!”

Lin Whitfield, Voscur’s Chair says, 

“We are very pleased that Sandra has been recognised for her outstanding contribution to the community – over 25+ years and in recent times. Sandra’s leadership at Voscur and approach to partnerships clearly produces great results for Bristol. In her work with VCSE organisations, Sandra’s vision and energy have resulted in major changes, often for those most at risk, and helped to ensure that people are supported and don’t fall through the net. Voscur, the VCSE sector and Bristol’s communities all benefit from Sandra’s dedication – we are delighted that she has received an MBE to reinforce our appreciation.” 

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