Watch the inspiring 1 Million Minutes Awards ceremony as it happened
Good Morning Britain's Kate Garraway and Ben Shephard hosted a star-studded evening to celebrate the people who went above and beyond to help combat loneliness.
Animal Loneliness Champion
WINNER - CUDDLY CAVIES - DIANA TAYLOR
Diana started Cuddly Cavies two years ago when she had to give up work to look after her son who has autism.
Cuddly Cavies provides a pet based therapeutic animal activity for the elderly, disabled or young children.
Diana takes her guinea pigs into care homes across Norfolk to provide the therapy and she believes guinea pigs can help 'revitalise the lives of many elderly people, whether they are disabled, reside in assisted living complexes, are partially sighted or blind, or live with a mental health condition.'
Mental Health Loneliness Champion
WINNER - KEITH INESON - GAYFARMER.CO.UK
At 14 years-old Keith knew he was gay but because he was growing up in farming he didn’t feel able to come out until he was 50.
After founding Cheshire’s Agricultural Chaplaincy Team, Keith began working with gay farmers and realised how many people across the country in the same situation must also be hiding their sexuality and consequently facing enormous pressures on their mental health and wellbeing.
Keith set up Gayfarmer.co.uk for gay farmers suffering mental health issues and feeling lonely & isolated and he later set up the ‘Gay Farmer Helpline’ in 2010.
It is the only service of it’s kind in the UK to support men in isolated rural communities struggling with their sexuality.
The Prince’s Trust Young Champion
WINNER - HIDDEN TALENT
Hidden Talent, are a group of long-term unemployed young people from Leicestershire.
In total, they have volunteered almost 10,000 hours of their time to raise public and corporate awareness of the barriers to employment faced by young people due to hidden disabilities.
All members of the group have faced their own personal challenges with hidden disabilities and health conditions and they were keen to support others who might be in a similar situation to themselves.
One of the key issues the group wanted to tackle was the understanding of the needs of young people with hidden conditions like mental health problems, school exclusion, homelessness and offending.
They understand how being unemployed for long periods and having hidden disabilities can be an incredibly isolating and very lonely experience.
Dame Barbra Windsor Award
WINNER - DANNY BROWN
Danny was diagnosed with vascular dementia in 2014 and after struggling with the diagnosis made plans to end his life.
However, after contacting the Alzheimer's Society he got the support he needed and became involved in volunteering, and since then, he hasn’t looked back.
Danny, based in Northern Ireland, works effortlessly to break down the stigma around dementia and help others with the condition.
He has visited schools, churches, shopping centres and even a cinema to raise awareness about dementia and was instrumental in making the Antrim shopping centre in Northern Ireland, the first dementia-friendly shopping centre.
Volunteer of the Year
WINNER - DALE MALLIN
Dale Mallin was medically discharged from the military service, with physically degenerative injuries and PTSD, after 16 years of distinguished service with the Argyll and Sutherland Highlanders.
His family moved to Strone thinking the peacefulness would help Dale but he became isolated and withdrew from society.
Dale’s wife and childhood sweetheart Nadia, noticed that he was giving up on life and that he felt abandoned and isolated despite the deep love of his family so decided to do something about it.
Knowing Dale’s love of fast cars, Nadia drove him on a 1,200-mile round trip to attend a ‘Not Forgotten’ charity Track Day at Brands Hatch in July 2018.
Nadia said it was 'the turning point for Dale and he has now rediscovered his drive, zest for life, purpose, confidence and dignity.'
WINNER - FRIEND IN DEED - KELLY LINDSAY
Kelly Lindsay saved up her own money to start the charity ‘Friend in Deed’ that creates friendship across generations through various intergenerational schemes with the aim of reducing loneliness and promoting kindness.
Intergenerational care home visits involve babies, children and young adults who visit care homes, dementia cafés, day centres, and sheltered housing sites.
The charity’s main schemes are called “Little Visitors” where people take babies and toddlers into care homes.
Kelly said when she first set it up it was all about bringing people together. Now it’s all about getting the older people outside.
Special Recognition Award
THE WIDOWS EMPOWERMENT TRUST - OYOVWE KIGHO
Oyovwe started ‘The Widows Empowerment Trust’ charity 3 years ago - she has helped hundreds of widows and widowers to cope with grief and loneliness and regain their confidence after a loss.
She was inspired to set up the charity after her own friend experienced this. A few weeks after the funeral, her friend was on her own and people got on with their lives and she needed support.
Oyovwe was herself made homeless last year, she lost her property along with her children. But her own challenges didn’t stop her and she didn’t tell anyone what she was going through.
Last year, when she was in temporary accommodation, she managed to carry on with her charity. She is now living back in a 5 bedroomed house.
The London Honey Company
The Body Shop
Lily & Loaf
Guava and Gold