Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II has today recognised Michele Irving from Dangriga Town, representing Belize, as the 139th Commonwealth Point of Light in honour of her exceptional voluntary service supporting the most vulnerable during the COVID19 pandemic.
Michele is supporting the most vulnerable in her community during the current COVID19 crisis by coordinating the provision of goods and assistance to the elderly, survivors of gender-based violence and people living with HIV. Michele is also working with local NGOs to ensure that access to sexual and reproductive health services is maintained during the pandemic.
As part of the legacy of the Commonwealth Heads of Government Meeting in London 2018, Her Majesty The Queen – as Head of the Commonwealth – is thanking inspirational volunteers across the 54 Commonwealth nations for the difference they are making in their communities and beyond, by recognising one volunteer from each Commonwealth country every week. By sharing these stories of service, the Commonwealth Points of Light awards celebrate inspirational acts of volunteering across the Commonwealth and help inspire others to make their own contribution to tackling some of the greatest social challenges of our time, including the current COVID-19 pandemic.
Michele said: “It is indeed both humbling and exhilarating to be recognized for what I love to do. My life’s work is rooted in helping others. It is fuel by a sense of equity, equality and justice that is deeply rooted in my love and respect for humanity. ‘A luta continua.’”
Claire Evans OBE, UK High Commissioner in Belize, said: “It has given me great pleasure to present this Commonwealth Point of Light award to Michele on behalf of Her Majesty The Queen. Michele’s active contribution in her community over the last 25 years deserves this praise and recognition alone however her selfless dedication to supporting the most vulnerable in her community during this unprecedented time of Covid-19 is remarkable. Michele’s enthusiasm, determination and consideration for others is an inspiration and a wonderful role model.”
The Commonwealth is a diverse community of 54 nations that work together to promote prosperity, democracy and peace. The Heads of Government meeting brought together leaders from all the 54 Member countries to reaffirm common values, address shared global challenges and agree how to work to create a better future for all citizens, especially young people. Voluntary service is a vital part of this agenda, which is why Her Majesty The Queen has chosen to recognise outstanding volunteers across the Commonwealth in this special way.
For more information, please contact Julian Towers: Julian.Towers2@fco.gov.uk