A STUDENT from Wrexham has received a national award for his dedication and commitment to volunteering during his time at university.

Rhydian Jones, 24, from Minera, who is studying business and management at De Montfort University (DMU) in Leicester, has been awarded Volunteering England’s Gold Award.

This is the only national student volunteering award that recognises achievement, dedication and leadership within further and higher education.

Rhydian has been volunteering since his first year at DMU and is now treasurer of the student volunteering committee.

He has been volunteering at the local British Heart Foundation shop, has built bird tables for a primary school’s conservation area and has taken part in a sleep out to raise awareness of homelessness and to raise money for Leicester charity Action Homeless.

Rhydian works through the students’ union volunteering service, DSU Volunteering, which also named him Volunteer of the Year.

Rhydian said: “I am truly overwhelmed in receiving these awards and it’s a real privilege, especially being amongst so many other committed volunteers.

“I feel really fortunate being in a position at DMU to have the opportunities and information available to get involved.

“I have realised that although as a student I don’t have lots of spare money, I do have some spare time, which I believe can make a difference.

“If everyone is committed in some way to helping other people, however small, they would be surprised the huge impact it can make.”

Victoria Hossack, manager at DSU Volunteering, said: “Rhydian has got stuck into everything the committee has done this year and has played a major part in all their fundraising and events.

“He is a very reliable and committed volunteer and I am very pleased that his work has been recognised in this way.”