Awards and recognition

2021 Volunteer Awards

A virtual awards presentation will be held during Volunteers Week (1-7th June) and will be specially organised to celebrate the incredible contribution made by our dedicated volunteers!

Once all nominations have been received a panel of judges will shortlist finalists for the six awards. Volunteers who have already received a ‘Pat on the Back’ will automatically be put forward for shortlisting.  

The six winners will be recognised at the virtual events and their nominations will be entered for consideration in the annual Guide Dogs People Awards.

Nominations are now closed.

2021 nominations are now closed

Local Volunteer Awards 2020 - Categories, winners and runner ups 

Last year we held our Local Volunteer Awards via Zoom and we were delighted to announce all of our winners and runners up for 2020.

Congratulations to all! 

Pat on the Back recognition scheme

Guide Dogs’ vision is of a society in which people with sight loss enjoy the same freedom of movement as everyone else. At Guide Dogs we really value the contribution and commitment of all our volunteers and staff, working together to ensure that our vision is achieved.

The Pat on the Back recognition scheme is designed to recognise outstanding achievements of individuals or teams volunteering or working for Guide Dogs which contribute towards our overall mission and demonstrate our behaviours:

  • Person-centred
  • Expert
  • Optimistic
  • Partner
  • Lead-by-example
  • Engage

What is a Pat on the Back?

Pat on the Back is a scheme whereby volunteers and staff members can be nominated for carrying out something over and above their usual activities or duties in line with our values and contributing to our overall purpose. It can be a one off activity or something that has taken place over a period of time.

Anyone can nominate a staff member or volunteer including Guide Dogs’ volunteers, staff members, clients and members of the public. Where someone doesn’t have access to the internet, a staff member may need to assist them with their nomination.

What will happen once I have submitted my nomination?

Once we have received your nomination form the person you have nominated will receive a thank you letter containing your message from the nomination form along with a Pat on the Back pin badge. We will include your name in the letter so the person knows who made the nomination.

There is no limit on how many times you can put someone forward for a Pat on the Back, but please think carefully about your reasons before submitting the individual’s details more than once.

Volunteers nominated will also be considered for a local or national volunteering award or the annual People Awards.

There is no closing date for Pat on the Back; it's a rolling programme, so it is timely and you can show your appreciation all year round!

Pat on the Back nomination form

Nomination forms must be typed and submitted to

Get in touch

If you need any help completing the nomination form, please call the volunteering office

0345 143 0191