Community efforts recognised at Skye Civic Awards

Individuals and schools from the Isle of Skye and Raasay received recognition for the important contribution they make to local life during the Eilean a’ Cheò Civic Awards held in Portree on Monday this week.

This is the seventh year of the awards which are organised by Eilean a’ Cheò Councillors to recognise people from all age groups and walks of life who have contributed to the success and wellbeing of their local communities.

The arts/music award was presented to Dinah Rankin from Kilmaluag who was nominated by Kilmuir Community Council.

Dinah works tirelessly to support and encourage the children of the area, specifically over the past year when she has run an after-school club to prepare children for the local and national Mods.

The youngsters of ‘Clann Throndairnis’ enjoyed huge success in Fort William at the National Mod – winning a huge haul of medals for group and individual performances.

The community award went to Roddy Murray from Tarskavaig who has been in public office nearly all his working life. His early years were spent in the Western Isles where he undertook many roles in Comhairle nan Eilean Siar. After moving back to Skye, he has been tireless in a range of roles including those in Sleat Community Trust and the Sleat Community Council, of which he is currently chair.

Aside from his roles in the community trust and community council he continues to contribute in his own home village of Tarskavaig where he is clerk of the common grazings and on the Communities Hall management committee.

Kyleakin and Kylerhea Community Council successfully nominated Kyleakin Connections and Marrion Grant for the Enterprise Award.

Marrion has been a volunteer for Skye and Lochalsh Association for Disability for over eight years, helping at the Nice Café and Bookshop enterprise which is run by the attenders, staff and volunteers of Kyleakin Connections – the day care centre that encourages and supports independent living and life skills for local people with learning and physical disabilities.

The environment award was presented to Ingrid Bruce from Portree. For the last few years, Ingrid has worked tirelessly to support the Eco Committee at Portree Primary School.  Ingrid has given of her time to offer a weekly gardening club after school which pupils have benefitted greatly from.  

The 2017 sport award went to the team of coaches at Portree Primary who were nominated by staff and pupils.

Collectively the coaches run an extensive calendar of extra-curricular activities. The volunteers give of their time freely weekly for regular training sessions and also to accompany groups of children to events across the country.

Andrew Grieve from Broadford was awarded the young people award after being nominated by Nicholas Kelly, a youth worker with HighLife Highland.

Andrew moved to Broadford last year while in his sixth year at High School and started his volunteering with a small after-school Dodgeball session for primary aged children. He has now finished school and has continued his volunteering with a regular Monday afternoon session. For a year now he has delivered and managed these weekly term sessions as a HighLife Highland Young Leader, and has completed a Sports Leaders UK course.

Andrew volunteers not only for after school activities, he volunteers almost every Saturday at the Crossroads Shop in Portree and he also volunteers his time on a Sunday at the old folks home at An Acarsaid in Broadford where he helps out and talks to the residents.

During the ceremony Councillors John Finlayson, who chaired the ward forum, John Gordon and Ronald MacDonald presented the winners with their awards and thanked everyone for taking part.

Chair of the Isle of Skye and Raasay Committee, Councillor John Gordon said: “It is great that we have had this opportunity to thank people for the terrific work they do in our communities Sitting on the judging panel was challenging as we received so many strong nominations Every one of this year’s winners certainly deserve public recognition for their work. Often such people work quietly behind the scenes without a fuss, just keen to get on with their work.

“However, the awards are about celebrating the hard work and voluntary effort that goes on across Skye and Raasay so on behalf of all my fellow ward councillors I say thank you and well done. Keep up the good work.”