To celebrate Volunteer’s Week, we wanted to show you, our volunteers, just how special and important we think you are.  

2023 is the first year that we’ve held the Re-engage Volunteer Awards and what a great response we got to our call for nominations. We received so many suggestions from volunteers, older people, and staff that we were simply unable to choose just one winner, so we opted for two.

The joint winners of the Re-engage Volunteer Awards 2023 are Kerris Ohlsson and Jane McKiernan who’ve both won a bed and breakfast stay for two people from a choice of 800+ hotels in locations across the UK.

Huge congratulations. You are truly inspirational volunteers and worthy winners.

We also have a special mention for call companion, Jasper Minton, who was nominated by the older person he calls each week.

Kerris Ohlsson (Nominated by a fellow volunteer)

“Kerris had been coordinating the Islington tea party group for about 20 years. She constantly goes above and beyond the remit of a coordinator in so many ways: contacting guests regularly throughout the lockdown, always remembering birthdays and knowing how everyone is getting on. We operate in a difficult environment in Islington, with many homes inaccessible to our guests, and a shifting population. We, the drivers, are amazed at how she always comes up with a host!” 

“She has done all this despite not always being in the best of health. Without her, our group would not exist.” 

Jane McKiernan (Nominated by a member of Re-engage staff)

“Jane is a fun person to be around. She’s full of ideas and determination to recruit more lonely older people, not only in her local area, but the whole of Birmingham. She’s committed to Re-engage’s vision that no one is too old to make new friends. Not only is Jane a great coordinator of her tea party group, but she has also committed to helping to get new activity groups off the ground as they launch in Birmingham. She regularly generously gives up her time to visit new potential venues and meet new volunteers, welcoming them into the groups, helping to bring the group together. She distributes leaflets and posters and is a key member of the steering group for the new activity groups project. She’s a true inspiration and well deserves to be recognised.”

We’d also like to give a special mention to Jasper, a wonderful call companion volunteer who was nominated by the older person he makes call companion calls to.

Jasper Minton-Taylor (Nominated by an older person)

“Jasper is a wonderful person who calls me every week at the same time without fail. Jasper and I have had some riveting conversations, but he's also gotten me through my worst when I have not been polite. Jasper continued to stick with me. I have had the worst year of my life and speaking with Jasper is something wonderful that has come out of a terrible year, and I want him to be recognised for what he is doing.”

A big thank you to everyone who made a nomination and huge congratulations to the many volunteers who were nominated. We wish you could all be winners.

Our next volunteer award will be held in December, and we’ll tell you how you can make your nomination in Re-engage Matters closer to the time.

Contact us

We have teams across the UK.


7 Bell Yard


0800 716543

Office phone:

020 7240 0630