Anna W meets Prince Edward and the Countess of Wessex through her volunteering work with BERT


When Covid hit our community a little over a year ago, RGS student Anna W was at the front of the line to volunteer to help families in need. For the past 12 months Anna has been selflessly supporting others as a volunteer with the Brockham Emergency Response Team known as BERT.

BERT is a charitable organisation that began several years ago after Brockham village flooded at Christmas, established to help local people with environmental and emergency issues.

Anna, her sister Kate and mum Clare got involved in March 2020 helping three times a week at the emergency food-aid centre that was established and operating out of the church hall. Taking deliveries from Fareshare (an organisation which collects unwanted items from the big supermarkets) and the Tesco hub at Gatwick, Anna played a key role helping pack food bags for over 100 families in need at the height of the pandemic from Brockham and other local villages in the Surrey Hills including Brockham, Newdigate, Leigh, Charlwood, Betchworth and Buckland. These deliveries made a huge difference to people in these challenging times. The service continued until January this year when pleasingly the demand reduced and a centralised system for support was established out of Dorking. Anna helped tirelessly throughout the whole period.

BERT was then asked to help support the roll out of the vaccine at the Covid vaccine centre at Medwyn Medical Practice in Dorking and Brockham surgery. Anna is a volunteer at both practices, marshalling and guiding people through the process. She has really enjoyed speaking to all those receiving the jab. Anna will be helping with this for as long as it continues.

Anna and the volunteers at BERT, have been awarded the Queen’s Award for Voluntary Service (the equivalent of an MBE for volunteer organisations) for all they have done to help local people through the pandemic and last week she was chosen to virtually meet Prince Edward and the Countess of Wessex. A huge credit to her!

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