A Walsall College lecturer has been twice recognised for her community work after attending a celebration reception hosted by the Prime Minister and receiving an invitation to attend the King’s Coronation concert.
In 2015, Suzy Richards founded Smile for Joel to help children and families experiencing grief or trauma as a result of murder and manslaughter. This was after the Tunisia terrorist attack where Suzy’s son, brother and father lost their lives.
Just a few weeks ago, West Bromwich MP, Shaun Bailey put Suzy forward as a Community Champion and she attended a reception event at Downing Street where Rishi Sunak congratulated her on her fundraising work.
And after being nominated for a Coronation Champions Award, she was accepted two tickets to the concert taking place at Windsor Castle on Sunday (7 May 2023).
“Everyone at Smile for Joel is extremely honoured that we’ve been recognised in such a prominent way,” said Suzy, who teaches travel and tourism at the college. “We know that 5,000 charity volunteers were nominated as Coronation Champions, so to be among the final 500 chosen by the Royal Voluntary Service is a huge achievement.
In addition to her Coronation Celebrations invitation, Suzy has received an official pin badge and a signed certificate from Their Majesties.
She added: “I want to thank everyone for their support and dedicate my Coronation Champion Award to my son, Joel, brother, Ade and father, Pat who were our champions.”
Smile for Joel’s fundraising work will continue this month with a Climb for Joel event taking place at the O2 Arena on 13 May.