Inspiring Business by Sharing Success

Sharon Wins Hands Down at Skills Community Awards

A fundraiser from Stapleford who has appeared on Pride of Britain, has won the honour of having a coach named after her.

It comes in the wake of a quest to find an outstanding community star, which was organised by Skills Holidays, a leading Nottingham-based travel company, in celebration of its 100th Anniversary.

 Sharon Hands (53) was originally nominated by her husband, Trevor (79), as a candidate in the ‘Stars of Skills’ initiative, it quickly became apparent that her fundraising work for her local community, set her apart as someone special.

Sharon, who had previously been recognised at the Best of Broxtowe Borough Awards in 2016 and the Pride of Britain Awards in 2018, was the subject of a passionate nomination from Trevor.

It detailed how she had raised more than £20,000 to help sick people who were struggling to make ends meet; how she had supplied 100 local residents with food hampers; and how she is currently raising money to provide people who have suffered life traumas with a restorative trip to the Isle of Wight.

And Trevor is clear about how extraordinary she is:

“Everything she does is for someone else.

“She’s got a life-threatening illness as well as a full-time job at a local bakery. She goes to college to continue to learn and, on top of all that, she’s spent the last couple of years looking after me during my fight against cancer. But she never moans about anything.

“She’s just so special. We’ll have been married 35 years in June and there’s not a moment goes by that I don’t feel lucky to have her as my wife.”

Sharon is more modest about her achievements: 

“There are a lot of people struggling at the moment, so it feels great when you’re able to help people out and bring everyone together as a community.

“I’ve been doing it now for so long that local people actually approach me because they want to contribute to a cause. And what’s really amazing is that a lot of the local businesses that make big contributions prefer to do their bit while remaining anonymous.”

As regards her victory at the Stars of Skills Awards, she seems genuinely touched:

“I have won awards in the past but this is the best one. Honestly, it was just lovely. I don’t do it for recognition but knowing that local people really care feels wonderful.”

Sharon was presented with her award, next to ‘The Sharon Hands’ Holiday Coach at Skills’ Head Office in Bulwell on Sunday 07 April – and Nigel Skill, Chairman of Skills Holidays, has no doubts at all about her qualities as a winner.

“This whole ‘Star of Skills’ initiative has been a great experience for all of us.

“Skills is a family company which, for a century now, has been bound up in the activities, the traditions and the personalities of the local community.

“And Sharon is someone whose work to serve that same community has been carried out without the slightest expectation of personal reward.

“We really couldn’t have hoped for a more deserving winner. We’re proud that the new Skills Coach bears her name.”

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