The Kingston Mayor's Community Awards celebrated outstanding contributions from residents and groups in the borough last night (March 18).

The event took place at Kingston Guildhall and witnessed RBK Mayor, Cllr Thay Thayalan, present a series of awards to the individuals and organizations selected for their commitment to worthwhile causes.

Cllr Thayalan heaped praise on all the recipients for their efforts and said that the borough had a uniquely great community spirit.

Cllr Thayalan said: "It was a proud and inspiring occasion to present these awards, which recognises the amazing contributions of those who have given their own time for the good of the community and to help others.

"There are a huge number of community-minded people in Kingston. The Community Awards acknowledges the achievements of these individuals and appreciates their contribution."

The list of winners featured some incredible stories of community work and activism, from Julian McCarthy's heritage work to Helen Brunskill's stunning commitment with Kingston Carers' Network.

Among last night's recipients were Simon Gree, who runs inclusive volunteer litter picks in the area.

In a statement about the awards, RBK Council said: "Simon along with the volunteer team, have made these events fun and inclusive for all ages and really brought the community together. Simon has boundless ideas to make the area brighter, cleaner and greener for residents."

Another community award was presented to Kingston resident of 30 years Dr Thevaunchari Nathan, who chairs the Centre for Community Development.

RBK Council said: "Theva is also an active volunteer of the Kingston based human rights organisation, the Tamil Information Centre and was one of the founding members and chair of the ‘Stroke Action London’."

Meanwhile the Mayor's Commendation Awards went to Dhillon Manku, a primary school student who was born prematurely and raises awareness for the Born Too Soon charity.

The Council praised Dhillon's efforts: "Dhillon was born prematurely and has attracted widespread fame and support in his quest to raising money for a new incubator at Kingston Hospital. He has organised numerous activities, whilst setting an example as a role model not only for other children but also adults.

"Despite his tender years, Dhillon has raised awareness for the charity Born Too Soon and has the support of the community, business leaders and celebrities...He has had the manufacturers of the incubator contribute to his fundraising efforts by reducing their price."

A full list of the winners and their contributions to the community can be found at: