After a three-year pause, the Live Here Love Here Community Awards returned on 23 March to celebrate the dedication of environmental volunteers across Northern Ireland.
We used the opportunity to thank and recognise the heroes around us who have demonstrated consistent and selfless hard work, instilling civic pride and tackling environmental issues in their local communities.
There were eight worthy winners for this year’s awards, reflecting the scope and variety of amazing activism happening throughout Northern Ireland.
- Creggan Country Park – Biodiversity Champion winner. An individual/group who have turned a grey space into a thriving home for nature.
- Claire Hassan – Hidden Gem winner. An award for a person/group in the community who quietly ‘gets on with it’ or a project that deserves some recognition.
- Eco Rangers – BIG Transformation winner. This award recognises a significant transformation to an open/public space which showcases environmental stewardship and community engagement.
- Edward Campbell – Adopt A Spot Award (Sponsored by DAERA) winner. An individual or group who take action on the blight of litter through the Adopt A Spot programme.
- Handy Helpers – Connecting Communities winner. A group or individual who is pivotal in connecting people across geographical, generational or cultural boundaries for a common goal.
- Killyleagh Community Association – Spirit of Live Here Love Here (Sponsored by Keep Northern Ireland Beautiful) winner. A special award for an individual or group who encompasses the ‘Spirit of Live Here Love Here’.
- Springhill Community House – Health & Wellbeing winner. This award recognises the wide-reaching benefits of environmental volunteering for those who take part and the community who benefit from their work.
- Tidy Randalstown – Civic Pride Award winner. An individual or group who strive to improve their surroundings.
On the same night that we were handing out prizes in person to the 2022 champions, we were also thrilled to welcome back the one and only Joe Mahon to host a virtual screening of the Live Here Love Here Community Awards.
The UTV stalwart was joined by the likes of world-renowned inspirational speaker and author Jim Lawless, Environment Minister Edwin Poots, and Keep Northern Ireland Beautiful CEO Dr Ian Humphreys to help mark the occasion.