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Veterans’ charity chief executive named in Queen’s Birthday Honours
Alabaré chief executive Andrew Lord has been awarded an MBE in the Queen’s Birthday Honours, in recognition of his incredible contribution to the support of homeless and vulnerable adults and young people over the past 20 years.
Andrew became chief executive of the veterans’ charity in May 2000, and has guided the charity to now reach those in need across the south and south-west, and north and south Wales. In that time the charity has helped thousands of vulnerable and marginalised people who are homeless or have been in urgent need of support, transforming their lives and giving them new skills and bright futures.
This year publication of the Queen’s Birthday Honours was delayed from June to give the opportunity to recognise those who have played a significant part in tackling the COVID-19 pandemic. The announcement came on Saturday 10 October, the date that marks both World Homeless Day and World Mental Health Day, and is highly significant for Andrew and Alabaré.
Says Andrew, ‘It is a great honour to receive this award. I have fully enjoyed my 20 years at Alabaré, seeing a wonderful team deliver care and support to vulnerable people in Wiltshire and further afield. With the team at Alabaré we have made vast strides in helping more and more people in need across our region, giving them the skills and support they need to rebuild their lives. But our work in ending homelessness is not finished. So while the award marks what we have achieved, there is much to do.
‘COVID-19 has brought challenges to all. At Alabaré we were determined to continue to deliver the vital support in our homes at a time when we were in lockdown, and when there was much concern and anxiety. It is testament to the incredible team here at Alabaré that we have been able to keep our clients safe, well and supported throughout such unprecedented times.
‘This winter could be one of the hardest yet, with COVID still dominating our lives, and more people at risk of homelessness as a result of the economic turmoil from lockdown. I am proud and glad to be here with our staff team, our supporters and partner agencies to support all those in crisis and need in the coming months and years, and help each towards a new, independent and fulfilling life.’
Under Andrew’s leadership Alabaré has developed many new services, such as its dedicated Homes for Veterans programme, which now houses more than 100 ex-Armed Forces personnel every night, who otherwise could be forced to sleep on the streets. This year Alabaré opened a mental health service, Riverside Sanctuary, which has been providing invaluable support to people struggling with their mental well-being, especially in current times.
Malcolm Cassells is chairman of the Board of Trustees at Alabaré. He says: ‘I am delighted that Andrew Lord has been named in the Queen’s Honours. He has worked tirelessly over the past 20 years as chief executive of Alabaré Christian Care and Support to provide care and facilities for the most disadvantaged people in our society. It is an area of work that often doesn’t get acknowledged and yet without the commitment of people such as Andrew there would be many more homeless people on the streets. I also believe that this honour will be welcomed by the many staff and volunteers within Alabaré, who provide care in often very difficult circumstances, as recognition of their work.’
This year, the charity, like many others, has faced huge challenges from the COVID-19 pandemic. Staff across Alabaré have worked tirelessly to keep residents safe and well, and the charity has been reaching out to supporters to help it overcome the financial challenges arising from the postponement of fundraising events.
To find out more Alabaré and how you can get involved, click here
At Alabaré we support people to overcome the barriers of homelessness, mental ill health and learning disabilities in order to have a home, health, choice and independence. Alabaré Christian Care and Support provides the highest standards of accommodation and support to disadvantaged and vulnerable people in our communities in order that they can have a home, health, choice and independence. Since 1991, Alabaré has been working with people facing disadvantage through homelessness, mental ill health, learning disability or a combination of these. We provide housing and personalised support based on the individual needs and aspirations of each person, tackling underlying causes, and giving them the skills and confidence to move forward with their lives.
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