Maria Shakespeare, Community Hero
Maria lives on Bulwell's Crabtree estate -and the area is truly blessed to have someone as committed and caring as Maria living there. Maria is a lynchpin for her local community, and a real hero who deserves this award in recognition for everything she does to improve the lives of others.
She's been Chair of the local tenants' group for four years, and Chair of the local community centre for three. She's passionate about improving the lives of local residents, and volunteers her time tirelessly to support others.
The centre was on the verge of closing before Maria got involved; now, 16 groups meet there every week in activities that reach out to many on the estate - from young people in crisis and people who are lonely and have no-one to talk to, to parent and toddler groups and family activities. Maria makes time for everybody and simply gets on with things without a fuss, taking everything in her stride.
When the community centre was temporarily closed at the start of lockdown, Maria worked with other local organisations to deliver essentials to those in need on the estate and even cooked meals herself to give out to families. And she didn’t stop there - she worked with partners to delivery socially distanced fitness activities on the estate to help women and children be more active.
Maria is truly a local hero, and here at Nottingham City Homes, we're as proud of her as her friends on the Crabtree estate are. Well done, Maria.