Leicestershire AIDS Support Services Nominated For National Award

Leicestershire Aids Support Services has been nominated for a major national prize at the UK charity sector’s most prestigious awards scheme, The Charity Awards.

LASS provide support, information and advocacy to people affected by HIV and AIDS as well as working to prevent the spread of the disease through community action, awareness raising and training.  We have been shortlisted in the Healthcare & Medical Research category.  We are hoping to pick up the coveted award at an awards ceremony in London on 9th June attended by personalities including comedian Hugh Dennis, author Monica Ali, star of Strictly Come Dancing Bruno Tonioli and newsreaders Krishnan Guru Murthy and Andrea Catherwood.

Chosen from a record number of entries, LASS has been shortlisted by the Charity Awards judges for its Rapid HIV testing service, a drop-in service set up in 2009 to provide tests for local people as soon as they make the decision to have one.  Leicester City has the highest rising HIV rate in the East Midlands and 6th highest in the country, due in part to the number of people living locally who are unknowingly infected.  Since opening its doors, the Rapid HIV testing service has delivered more than 400 tests, helping to prevent late diagnosis and onward transmission.  If we win this category, we will also be in the running to pick up the Overall Award for excellence in charity management – a prestigious award given to the best of the 10 category winners.

Patrick Bowe Chair of LASS Board of Trustees said:

‘I am delighted that LASS such a small charity had been shortlisted in such a big field. This is a testament to the high quality work of the volunteers and staff.’

The annual Charity Awards ceremony, sponsored by the Charities Aid Foundation, The Leadership Trust and The Times, is the highest profile event in the charity calendar.  Since launching 12 years ago, the awards have honoured hundreds of charities, large and small, from across the UK, acknowledging their outstanding work and achievements and the tireless commitment of the people behind them.  The charities, which submit their own entries, are each shortlisted for specific initiatives which have improved the delivery of their charitable objectives and which demonstrate outstanding examples of best practice from which other charities can learn.

Jenny Hand CEO at LASS said:

‘We are all very proud of the real difference our support services, awareness raising and HIV testing is making to so many local people. We have been judged to be one of the best 32 Charities in the Country by the Charity Awards panel. This is a real achievement by our volunteers and staff in a particularly challenging year with so many threats to funding sources.’

The Charity Awards 2011 is organised by Civil Society Media, the leading publishing and training company for the voluntary sector.  The distinguished panel of judges includes Andrew Hind CB, former chief executive of the Charity Commission, Dr John Low CBE, chief executive of the Charities Aid Foundation, Dame Mary Marsh, founding director of the Clore Social Leadership Programme and former chief executive of the NSPCC, Sir Christopher Kelly, chair of the King’s Fund, Lesley-Anne Alexander, chief executive of RNIB and Martin Brookes, chief executive of New Philanthropy Capital.

Daniel Phelan, organiser of the Charity Awards 2011 comments:

“The Charity Awards recognise and reward the exceptional work that takes place within the voluntary sector right across the UK and beyond.  This year, our 12th, has seen a record number of organisations decide that it is their time to take a bow, demonstrating that charities, rather than being disheartened by the challenging times we face, are finding strength and inspiration in adversity.  It is a great testimony to the spirit of the sector and makes the acknowledgement of the major and selfless contribution they make to society, more important than ever.

By being shortlisted, LASS has already demonstrated that it is amongst the best managed charities in the UK. I wish everyone involved the best of luck on the night.”

LASS offer a completely free and confidential rapid HIV test and you’ll get the results within 60 seconds from a simple finger prick test.  We use the Insti HIV test produced by BioLytical laboratories.  The test is 99.96% accurate from 90 days post contact for detecting HIV 1 and 2 antibodies.

Appointments are not always necessary, if you would like a test, please contact us on 0116 2559995

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