[Major Paul Wright, Pauline Brown of SVP, Mayor Alan Robinson and Liam Flanigan of Limavady Borough Council]
The Salvation Army has been awarded the Freedom of the Borough of Limavady for its work with vulnerable and disadvantaged people.
Major Paul Wright, accepted the honour on behalf of the church and charity at a ceremony hosted by the Mayor of Limavady, Alderman Alan Robinson.
The award is the first of its kind given out by the Borough and was presented jointly to The Salvation Army and Society of St Vincent De Paul (SVP) for their “outstanding” community work, especially on the Christmas initiative the Family Appeal.
[Captains Joan and Eddie Archibald with Melanie and James Boyle]
Speaking at a ceremony at the Roe Valley Arts and Cultural Centre in Limavady, Major Wright, programme support officer in Ireland Division, said: “We are humbled and honoured to receive this recognition. Captains Joan and Eddie Archibald do a fantastic job as the commanding officers at our Limavady Outreach Centre. They are well known figures in the community and are dedicated to caring for people who are vulnerable or in need.
"The Family Appeal is a great symbol of unity and commitment to work with St Vincent de Paul and integrate the fabric of society through reaching out to others without judgement.”
Mayor Robinson said: “I’m pleased to bestow this award to two fantastic charities for the outstanding work they have done to promote voluntary aid to the poor and disadvantaged of this Borough.”
The Family Appeal is run by The Salvation Army and SVP in Northern Ireland, and for the past 35 years has making Christmas brighter for thousands of children and families. Last year over 30,000 gifts were given out across the province.
Limavady Outreach Centre runs a range of activities including a charity shop, a drop-in for people of all ages and backgrounds, and a food bank in conjunction with other churches. There are also a number of groups who work out of the centre, such as a Chinese group, craft group, and family group.