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ACVO News November 2023

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Dec 13, 2022

Streetsport volunteer shortlisted as Unsung Hero at BBC Sports Personality of the Year

A long-term Streetsport volunteer from Aberdeen has been nominated as a finalist for this year’s Unsung Hero award at the 2022 BBC Sports Personality of the Year.

Dave Thompson, 54, is a regular volunteer at both Streetsport, the flagship programme of Denis Law Legacy Trust, which is ran in partnership with Robert Gordon University, and Befriend a Child. Both organisations were delighted to support his nomination. 

On top of his weekly volunteering and dedication to good causes, Dave also works full-time as Director of UK Sales at Dyce-based Remote Medical International.

Among many achievements, Dave has volunteered over 300 hours at Streetsport sessions; has volunteered with Befriend a Child since April 2021; he tackled the 50-mile Assynt Traverse, a mammoth 12-peak ultra-marathon, to raise over £1,000 for Streetsport; in 2019 he raised money for Barnardo’s by running a 64-mile route in under 24 hours; he assisted in running a primary school pre-school running club with Sport Aberdeen; and he volunteered at youth tennis training sessions for young people with Judy Murray at Inchgarth Community Centre. 

“Personally, it is great to be nominated but I enjoy what I do regardless of whether I get an award or not. I feel like a winner doing what I’m doing anyway.

Dave also contributes towards the communities he volunteers in massively. With the money he raised tackling the 50-mile Assynt Traverse, Denis Law Legacy Trust was able to invest in new equipment for their youth forum, Granite City Speaks, which aims to give the young people of Aberdeen a voice in local issues.

In addition to that, in Torry, where he volunteers, there has been a 50% drop in anti-social behaviour and his reliable presence provides a consistent role model for the young participants at sessions.

On his shortlisting, Dave said: “I’m absolutely over the moon to be nominated for Sports Personality of the Year: Unsung Hero. It’s amazing. 

“I’m a big fan of the awards. I watch it every year and I have been to see it live in Aberdeen and Glasgow so when I got the call that I had been shortlisted I could not believe it.

“Personally, it is great to be nominated but I enjoy what I do regardless of whether I get an award or not. I feel like a winner doing what I’m doing anyway.”

Mark Williams, Chief Operating Officer of Denis Law Legacy Trust, has known Dave since he began volunteering many years ago. He said: “Dave is always volunteering at Cruyff Court Neale Cooper on a Wednesday night, come rain or shine.

“He provides a consistent and positive role model for the young people there and we are over the moon he has been shortlisted for BBC Sports Personality of the Year: Unsung Hero, it is so well deserved.

“On top of his many hours volunteering, he is positively obsessed with taking on marathons and runs for good causes. Dave goes above and beyond for the charity and is the definition of an unsung hero.”

Watch the BBC Scotland news coverage on Dave’s nomination below:

Video provided by BBC Scotland and Denis Law Legacy Trust.

Denis Law Legacy Trust operates and delivers a number of programmes that enable young people to engage in free sport and creative activities within their local communities throughout Aberdeen.

Streetsport, the Trust’s flagship programme, aims to reduce instances of youth crime and anti-social behaviour; promote health and wellbeing and encourage inclusivity through sport, physical activity and creative endeavour.

The annual award ceremony will be held at MediaCityUK in Salford on Wednesday 21 December where the winners will be announced.

Find out more about Dave’s volunteer work and nomination on Denis Law Legacy Trust’s website here.

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