Helping It Happen Awards 2020 Winners

The aftermath of the Covid-19 pandemic and the lockdown which followed has forced all of us to adapt to a “new normal”. It was therefore decided that the Helping It Happen Awards 2020 would be held online in a virtual ceremony. The lockdown which followed the pandemic gave rise to a number of inspirational stories from all over the country, which inspired us to create the Community Champion of the Year award. This category saw one winner from each of our five regions across Scotland heralded for their work and accomplishments within their community.

The awards also saw a Judges Special Award presented to Hudson Hirsel.

You can re-watch the awards here, and read more about our winners below.

Conservation Award Winner

Sponsored byAnderson Strathern

The Borders Birdbox Project

The Borders Birdbox Project is a very simple concept; to supply each of the 60 primary schools across the Scottish Borders with 10 boxes and associated learning resources to monitor and enjoy. The simplicity of this idea should not belie the effectiveness of the boxes and (associated birds) as tools to engender a love, understanding and empathy for the

Innovation In Farming Award Winner

Sponsored byDouglas Home & Co

Peelham Farm

Multi-award winning Peelham is a family run organic farming and food production enterprise based on 670 acres at Peelham Farm in the Scottish Borders. In its organic on farm butchery, smoker and charecturie facility it produces grass-fed organic beef, grass-fed organic veal, grass-fed organic lamb, grass-fed organic mutton and free-range organic pork

Enhancing our Environment Award Winner

Sponsored byNatureScot

East Lothian Countryside Volunteers (ELCV)

ELCV run a Giant Hogweed landowner voluntary eradication programme on the East Lothian River Tyne and all it's tributaries. It is a long-term project of eradication as there are many seeds in the soil seed bank which will germinate over the next 10 years. The objective is to ensure that no Giant Hogweed plants flower exist on the 48 miles of the river Tyne

Iver Salvesen Green Business Award Award Winner


MiAlgae is a biotech business that aims to revolutionise the animal and fish feed industries. Founded by Douglas Martin in 2016 while he was studying Biotechnology at the University of Edinburgh, the company uses co-products from the whisky distillation process to produce omega-3-rich microalgae. The algae can be processed and sold as a rich feed supplement

Rural Business Award Winner

Sponsored byVelux

Fasque Forestry

Fasque Forestry was established when old commercial woodlands on the estate were falling into disrepair and there was evidence of an emerging growth in the timber market. Fasque, instead of hiring contractors, decided to do the job of planning, harvesting and restocking all in-house and invested in state-of-the-art machinery to do so. Local businesses are

Education Award Winner

Sponsored byBell Ingram

Duffus Estate

Duffus Estate is a family run estate comprising four farms, a mix of residential and holiday lets, newly launched eco-cabin, redevelopment of the mansion house and policy woodland. The Estate is also the venue for Earthtime’s Forest School Nursery which aims to have the children outside for at least 80% of the time, but they do have a yurt in the grounds if

Community Champion of the Year Award Winner

Sponsored byGLM

Ayrshire Food Hub

The food hub ceased group-health-educational activities upon lockdown and deployed staff and volunteers to produce soups and meals to support individuals and families facing greater disadvantage due to Covid.

Upgrading their kitchen allowed them to cook and distribute more than 700 meals weekly. Meals are distributed by the food hub and 13 partners; all

Community Champion of the Year Award Winner

Sponsored byGLM

Forth Resource Management Ltd.

Since 2002, Forth Resource Management has provided a sustainable recycling solution for the garden waste generated across South East Scotland and currently handles 70,000 tonnes per annum. The process produces high quality compost which is sold back under the Caledonian Horticulture banner to gardeners, landscapers and farmers.

When local councils stopped

Community Champion of the Year Award Winner

Sponsored byGLM

Conner Pratt

Conner is 21 years old and from Coaltown of Balgonie, a village in Fife. During lockdown, wearing full Highland dress, Conner piped in his street every Thursday evening to support the NHS. He also played 150 plus performances at local care homes throughout Fife twice a week standing outside to maintain social distancing to entertain the residents.

At his

Community Champion of the Year Award Winner

Sponsored byGLM

Dunecht Estates volunteers - Help for the Vulnerable Scheme

The Scheme was set up at the start of lockdown to provide essential support to estate pensioners, tenants and those within the wider local community of Dunecht who were self-isolating or fell within the ‘at risk’ groups. Support included collecting and delivering shopping, picking up prescriptions and help with pets.

Telephone support was also provided to

Community Champion of the Year Award Winner

Sponsored byGLM

Margaret Payne


During lockdown, 90 year old Margaret completed a "Suilven Challenge" which saw her climb the equivalent of Suilven on her stairs. She climbed 282 times over 73 days or 10 weeks. During that time Margaret raised £434,562 for NHS, NHS Highlands, Highland Hospice and RNLI, with more than half of this coming back into the Highlands.