The Ulster New Zealand Trust volunteers will be presented with the Queen’s Award for Voluntary Service by Her Majesty’s Lord Lieutenant of Co Antrim at a Presentation Ceremony to be held at The Ballance House, Glenavy, on Thursday 20 June 2019. This is the highest form of civic recognition granted by the Queen in appreciation of the outstanding work of volunteers and is a great cause for celebration as it also recognises the achievements of John Ballance and links between Ulster and New Zealand.
“Having gone through a testing assessment to demonstrate that UNZT provides a worthy service in the local community, is supported, recognised and respected by our community and is run by local volunteers, it is a great honour to have been selected for this 2019 Queen’s Award. Although 12,000 miles apart, the work of UNZT to maintain and foster what brings our two countries together is incredibly important for this and future generations. The Red Hand of Ulster rightly embraces the Silver Fern of New Zealand in many historic, cultural and sporting ways, of which both lands can be very proud” said Paul Hewitt, Chairman of the Board of Trustees.
Helen McClenaghan, a volunteer of 9 years, commented that “Being a UNZT volunteer brings great satisfaction, providing The Ballance House guided tours and catering for our many visitors at frequent special events, at our April to September Sunday openings and at pre-arranged visits by numerous organisations. Our cheerful, co-operative team ensures wide public access to this remarkable cultural and educational venue”.
The Northern Ireland Representative for the Award, Walter Rader OBE said “This is a wonderful achievement for the Ulster New Zealand Trust as it recognises the dedication, commitment and skills of volunteers who commemorate the life and achievements of John Ballance, as well as promoting good relations between Ulster and New Zealand".
Congratulations to our team of volunteers for the work they carry out to provide a unique visitor experience.