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METRO Chief Executive awarded British Empire Medal in New Year Honours List

29th December 2012

METRO Chief Executive, Marguerite McLaughlin is awarded the British Empire Medal in the 2013 New Years Honours List for health and community services to lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender and African people in London and the South East.

Marguerite has been METRO's Chief Executive since 2003 and has led the organisation through a decade of huge growth and change. Under her leadership, METRO has established itself as a provider of sexual health, HIV, mental health and youth services, not only in its home borough of Greenwich, but across London and the South East and into national and international projects.

METRO is now the biggest provider of direct services to LGBT people in London, and its services extend to many other communities including African people, young people and people living with HIV. METRO is also a significant third sector organisation in Kent and Medway and is leading the biggest national survey of young LGBT people across England in its groundbreaking Youth Chances project. In ten years METRO's annual income has increased to £2.5 million and it now employs 70 staff and is supported by over 100 volunteers.

Marguerite McLaughlin said:

It is very humbling to be honoured in this way and I am absolutely thrilled to have been recommended for this award. I am inspired every day by the passion, commitment and enthusiasm of METRO's service users, volunteers and staff. METRO is unique in providing the range of services that it does - services that I am proud to say, have been developed in response to the needs of the people and communities we work with and for.

The Prime Minister revived the British Empire Medal in 2011 particularly to recognise the hard work and dedication of the voluntary sector, and I am very pleased to accept the award in that spirit and in recognition of the important role the sector plays in the life of the nation, supporting those communities most in need.

ENDS

Contact: Patricia Durr, Head of Communications & PR, patricia@metrocentreonline.org 07912515397

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Abimbola- First Point

It has been a long time since I felt that someone actually listened to me.

Joe - Mentoring

The programme had such an impact on my life that I decided to come on board as a volunteer mentor!

Ebere - First Point

I wish this service was around when I was newly diagnosed. I felt my world had fallen apart around me and I didn't know which way to turn for support. You are offering a very valuable service.

Peter- First Point

I felt so relieved to have a named First Point worker who I can call if I need to be referred to a particular service.

Kwasi - Mentoring

During the 6 month programme, I developed a close relationship with my mentor. Knowing that I would have to talk to him honestly about what I did in the previous 2 weeks somehow forced me to be safe every time I had an encounter.

Sarah - Counselling

The help and understanding I experienced from everyone I came into contact with whilst using the Metroís services was amazing.

Joan - First Point

Thank you so much for taking time to listen to me and truly understand how I am feeling. This is the only appointment I've had regarding HIV that didnít feel rushed.

Michael - Counselling

I gained a huge amount of help from the counselling service and would like to thank the service for offering so much support.

Simon - Mentoring

By discussing things at such an intimate level with my mentor, I really came face to face with some of the reasons why I was taking chances before.

David - Counselling

Outstanding people. Outstanding service. Outstanding counselling. Truly something that has allowed me to turn my life around.

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