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Care duo receive honours medals; ROYAL RECOGNITION.

Presentation ceremonies Sharon Liptrott Honours medals have been presented to two Dumfriesshire women.

Mrs Julie Joseph, chief executive of Common Thread Ltd, received her OBE from the Duke of Cambridge, Prince William, at Buckingham Palace on Wednesday.

And Mrs Marie Dunbar, founder of the St Columba's Playgroup in Annan, was presented with her British Empire Medal by Dumfriesshire Lord Lieutenant, Fiona Armstrong, on Friday. Mrs Joseph was named in the Queen's birthday honours for her outstanding work in both the care and charity sectors.

The former Dumfries Academy pupil founded The Common Thread Group - a care provider for children with some of the most challenging backgrounds in the UK - in 2004.

She is a practicing psychotherapist specialising in adolescent trauma.

Mrs Joseph, who lives at Clarencefield, said: "I am truly honoured to accept this award but recognise that many people have supported my success not least my daughters Amelia and Sophie and my husband Mark.

"Gaining recognition for my work within the childcare sector feels very special and I hope that we can continue to raise the profile of our work in residential childcare as this has such a significant impact upon the lives and futures of young people."

Mrs Joseph is known as an enthusiastic supporter of many charitable causes and one of her largest campaigns saw her spearheading an appeal to help Kosovo refugees in 1998.

Mrs Dunbar, 78, founded St Columba's Playgroup in the newly-built church hall in 1972. Dunbarton-born, she trained as a nursery nurse in Glasgow and worked at the Cresswell in Dumfries in the premature babies unit.

She moved from her Eastriggs home with her husband, Edward, to Newbury in Berkshire for two years before returning to the region and settling in Annan to raise her three daughters. She now has six grandchildren and five great-grandchildren.

Mrs Dunbar, who was playgroup leader at St Columba's Playgroup, retired after 45 years service in October last year.

During that time she also worked as a nursery teacher in the town and has provided early years education to generations of children.

She said: "It is an absolute honour to receive this award. I am just plain down to earth and never expected anything like this."

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Publication:Dumfries and Galloway Standard (Dumfriesshire, Scotland)
Geographic Code:4EUUK
Date:Nov 13, 2018
Words:368
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