Sandra Wakefield, a volunteer at Stamford Rugby Club has won the Regional (Nottinghamshire,Lincolnshire & Derbyshire Rugby Football Union) Mitsubishi Motors Award as part of the National Mitsubishi Motors Volunteer of the Year award in partnership with England Rugby.

First nominated back in June for the Regional Volunteer Recognition Programme, Sandra made it through to the finals where she received the award at a black-tie awards ceremony at Twickenham, the home of England Rugby. Together with 42 other winners from across the UK, it was a full-day experience with a tour of Pennyhill Park, England’s rugby training camp and the opportunity to meet Eddie Jones, the England head coach. This was then followed by a guided tour around the Twickenham ground before changing into evening attire with pitch-side drinks before the actual awards ceremony.

England Rugby and Mitsubishi Motors have developed the Mitsubishi Motors Volunteer Recognition Programme to provide the local rugby community and grassroots rugby clubs, referee societies, schools, colleges and universities, with opportunities to recognise and reward the volunteers who make up an integral part of the game.

Sandra says; “I had such an amazing day that I will never forget.  There are so many wonderful people out there who give up some or a lot of their spare time to make “their” club work which in turn enables so many people to enjoy and thrive in the sport that they love.  I met a lot of these incredibly special people at this event, all with different success stories to tell.  Of course, it was made extra special by the unexpected guest appearance of Eddie Jones, England coach.”

Sandra has been a volunteer at Stamford Rugby Club for over nine years. As Bar & Facilities Manager she is an integral part of the club often putting in long hours to accommodate the needs of players, parents and kids who make up this vibrant organisation.

Neil Jolly, Club President says: “The club are delighted that Sandra was recognised in this way. All clubs rely on their staff to be able to operate and having Sandra in such a leading role has given us a service that we can be proud of, she provides us with a level of professionalism delivered in a friendly way. We are very lucky to have her.”

On or off the pitch, behind the scenes or on the committee, from the kit washers to the line painters, the game we love wouldn’t be the same without the people who work tirelessly behind the scenes. With over 100,000 volunteers across the country who give back to grassroots rugby, week in, week out, the Mitsubishi Motors Volunteer Recognition Programme is the way to say thank you.

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