This award celebrates the inspiring individuals that help communities to improve places and lives.

About the Community Leader of the Year award

Our awards celebrate the power of collective action through the work of community groups.  However, we know that great groups rely on inspirational people – those special individuals who have not just chosen to give their time to improve their neighbourhood but who have been able to motivate and support others to do likewise.

2019 Sponsor: Tesco

Kindly supported by Tesco

I am delighted that Tesco are once again supporting the Groundwork Community Awards. Since 2015 Tesco has worked in partnership with Groundwork on the Bags of Help community grant scheme and together have supported over 23,000 community projects with more than £73million worth of grants. The Groundwork Community Awards celebrate some of the very best examples of work being done by local community organisations and I have been impressed by the quality of the shortlisted applications. I look forward to attending the awards ceremony and hearing more about the difference these groups make to their local communities.”

Alec Brown, Head of Community at Tesco

2019 Shortlist

Danny Barnes (Winner)

Danny Barnes is the founder of ‘Acknowledging Youths CIC’ – an organisation that supports young people to improve their lives by providing education, training and employment opportunities.

Anna Kennedy OBE

Anna Kennedy OBE is an educational entrepreneur and founder of the Anna Kennedy Online charity that raises awareness for autism.

Garry Wakeham

Garry Wakeham is the founder of ‘Open Arms East Devon’, an organisation that works with people living with mental health illness in East Devon.

2018 Shortlist

David Chatten-Smith (Winner)

David’s life was turned upside down when he was diagnosed with meningitis. What David found through this illness was strength to carry on but also an inner desire to help others.

Tony Wright

Tony is an Armed Forces Veteran, who has invested his efforts and working life in advocating on behalf of and supporting individuals categorised as having the most complex and chaotic lifestyles.

Kazia Knight

Kazia has enabled her community to be strong again and have a real pride in its town. By helping residents to take back their park, she has helped to create a much needed cohesive community identity.