ONE of the mainstays of the Women’s Royal Voluntary Service in South Yorkshire is looking forward to a date at the Palace after being awarded an OBE.
Christine Manby, who lives in Hallam Grange Crescent, has recruited and trained more than 600 volunteers across the East Midlands, many of them going on to work in hospitals.
She is also a key figure in responding to emergencies and led teams who ran evacuation centres at the Arena, the Town Hall and Hallam University during the floods that devastated parts of Sheffield in the summer of 2007.
More recently, she helped with emergency accommodation for people who were forced to leave their homes in Hillsborough because of a fire at a garage and the threat of explosion.
Christine, who has 30 years’ teaching experience, including specialist training in children’s trauma, is being honoured for services to the voluntary sector.
She joined the WRVS 20 years ago, starting in luncheon clubs and becoming senior instructor and deputy organiser for South Yorkshire, liaising with statutory emergency services and voluntary organisations such as the British Red Cross and the Samaritans.
She received the Prime Minister’s Award for outstanding service in 2008.
The OBE was a total surprise. “I read the letter several times and was just amazed that it should happen to me,” she said.
Christine praised the “magnificent” efforts of volunteers. “They are there at the end of the phone, and unless they are in really difficult times, will respond, just put things to one side. I never fail to be overwhelmed by their responses.”
Paul Taylor, WRVS’s service delivery manager for the Sheffield area, said: “Over the years Christine has responded generously with her time and effort to deal with both minor and significant emergencies. We are very happy to see her work rewarded in this way and want to thank Christine and all of our volunteers in the Sheffield area for their valuable work and commitment.”