Boston-area food store and pharmacy bag two awards in company scheme

Swineshead Food Store and Pharmacy, Lincolnshire Co-op's Volunteering Team of the Year. ''Picture: Chris Vaughan Photography for Lincolnshire Co-op
Swineshead Food Store and Pharmacy, Lincolnshire Co-op's Volunteering Team of the Year. ''Picture: Chris Vaughan Photography for Lincolnshire Co-op

Colleagues at a food store and pharmacy near Boston have bagged a brace of honours in a company award scheme celebrating community spirit.

Lincolnshire Co-op’s branch in Station Road, Swineshead, featured twice in the society’s Celebrating Together event, held recently at the Lincolnshire Showground.

Award-winner Dee Garrard.   Picture: Chris Vaughan Photography for Lincolnshire Co-op

Award-winner Dee Garrard. Picture: Chris Vaughan Photography for Lincolnshire Co-op

The aim of the award scheme is to recognise staff who have made life better in their communities.

Winners included Dee Garrard, from the Swineshead pharmacy, who was named Health Champion of the Year.

Each of Lincolnshire Co-op’s 49 pharmacies has a Health Champion to promote health campaigns and act as a first port of call to the community.

Dee received her award in light of such activities as: attending Community Cuppa social sessions, which are designed to tackle loneliness; helping out at Lincolnshire Co-op’s Community Health Pod, a mobile service offering wellbeing checks and services; supporting people to shed the pounds on a free weight management course, including one couple who lost four stone together in 12 weeks; and regularly promoting health awareness campaigns – even fitting in 20 health checks in one day during a Heart Age initiative.

She said: “It’s lovely to be appreciated. We all work hard in our pharmacy and it’s nice to know the effort you put in pays off.

“I’m grateful for the team I have around me and I couldn’t do it without them.

“It’s been great helping so many people. I like that face-to-face interaction with our patients.

“If someone comes in feeling miserable I do my best to make sure they leave here smiling.”

Alongside this, the food store and pharmacy as a whole won Volunteering Team of the Year.

Colleagues were honoured for the initiative they had shown in helping the community, taking it on themselves to arrange a large-scale project to re-vamp the garden area at Swineshead St Mary’s Primary School before the outlet opened last year.

Manager Emma Relton said: “We didn’t realise how much of a positive impact it would have for the community and school.

“What we managed to accomplish was unbelievable and they want us to help again – we’re looking at going back in the summer and we can’t wait.

“The volunteering bonded us as a team and helped us to get to know one another.”