OLDHAM-based Mahdlo Youth Zone has been awarded the Queens Award for Voluntary Service.

Since opening in 2012 Mahdlo – backed by local philanthropist Sir Norman Stoller’s charitable trust - has created around 750 volunteering opportunities for local residents, many of which have progressed into paid employment with the charity or other local youth organisations.

Terry Flanagan, chair of the board, said: “This is a great tribute to the hundreds of volunteers who have helped make Mahdlo such an inspirational and amazing place for the young people of Oldham.

“Without the dedication and support our volunteers bring as Trustees , Sessional volunteers and Mentors, Mahdlo would not be able to support young people and help them be the best they can be.”

Scarlett Ash, volunteer coordinator who received the award at a celebration garden party at Buckingham Palace with the club’s longest serving volunteer Les Barker, added: “It was such an honour for myself and Les to represent Mahdlo at a recent celebration garden party held at Buckingham Palace.

“Volunteering is a great way to meet new friends, learn or try something new, all people need is a few hours each week and the passion to get involved. Anyone that is considering volunteering, whatever their age or background, should get in touch. I’d love to hear from you and discuss how you can be a part of team Mahdlo too.”