• The West Midlands Lieutenancy, supported by United by 2022, has launched the 50forWM50 campaign, as it marks 50 years since the creation of the county
• 50forWM50 aims to recognise, celebrate and thank volunteers who are making a real difference in the West Midlands
• Members of the public are invited to take part with nominations now open

Across the region, people are being encouraged to nominate a volunteer who is making an impact in their local community, for special recognition as part of a new campaign celebrating the history of the West Midlands.

2024 marks the 50th anniversary of the creation of the West Midlands county and the West Midlands Lieutenancy. To celebrate this special milestone, the 50forWM50 campaign has been launched to recognise and thank volunteers across the region who are making a real difference in their local communities.

With nominations now open, the West Midlands Lieutenancy, supported by United by 2022 – the official charity of the Birmingham 2022 Commonwealth Games – are inviting members of the public to take part and share the stories of inspirational volunteers who are making a real impact in the region.

From March to April 2024, via the United by 2022 website, you can nominate volunteers of all backgrounds and ages, helping their communities in any of the seven local authorities in the West Midlands – Birmingham, Coventry, Dudley, Sandwell, Solihull, Walsall or Wolverhampton – can be nominated for recognition.

From these nominations, a dedicated judging panel will select 50 volunteers from each of the seven local authorities, who will be invited to join the ‘Big Thank You Bash’ in June, a special celebration event. Those 350 volunteers will then be narrowed down to just 50, and from that final shortlist, a single volunteer will be chosen for their outstanding contribution.

As a special thank you on behalf of the West Midlands region, the chosen volunteer will have a tram on the West Midlands Metro named in their honour, as a lasting tribute to their commitment to volunteering and positive impact on their local community.

Sir John Crabtree OBE, Lord-Lieutenant of the West Midlands, said:

“We were determined to mark the 50th Anniversary of the West Midlands both to recognise the 3 million residents who come together to make this such a very special place, but also to celebrate the extraordinary volunteering we witness almost every day. Heart-warming doesn’t begin to describe it. It’s such a privilege to have an opportunity to focus a spotlight on some of these wonderful people.”

Nicola Turner, CEO of United by 2022, said:

“We are delighted to support this volunteering campaign. All around the West Midlands there are special people lending a hand or giving their time. It’s one of the reasons this is such a special region.

“Volunteers were the standout stars of the Birmingham 2022 Commonwealth Games, their smiles and orange uniforms lit up the venues, and they made us feel proud of our place like never before. That spirit is still going strong- thousands of volunteers from the Games joined us last year to continue to come out and support our cities and region at events. Collectively, in 2023 they put in 10,000 volunteering hours!

“I think we all know someone who makes the world a better place by volunteering and now there is a fantastic way to celebrate them and say thank you. I already know who I am going to nominate!”

Nominations for the 50forWM50 campaign are now open. Nominations can be submitted from across the West Midlands region, in all communities and sectors, and there is no age limit for nominees, or time limit for how long the individual has volunteered – it could be one month, one year, or 50 years.

For more information, and to submit a nomination, visit www.unitedby2022.com/50forwm50/.