VALENTINE’S Day saw an out-pouring of love – for Borderers who give up their time to help others.

The Loving Our Volunteers event handed out eight awards at Kelso’s Edman House Hotel, and celebrated the efforts of the region’s unsung heroes.

There were four nominations for each award.

Caitlin Revel from Kelso won Young Volunteer of the Year for her work with the Brownies, Stable Life and Cheviot Youth, while Gale Coats took home the award for Adult Volunteer of the Year, for her work with the Splash Project in Eyemouth.

Jean Murray was named Golden Volunteer after 36 years of helping residents at the Central Borders Citizens Advice Bureau.

Borders Care Voice volunteer Jenny Mushlin scooped the Long Service award and Ruth Jones won the Hidden Asset title for volunteering with Escape Youth Services in Hawick.

The Barry J Jackson Local Hero award was handed to Joe Devlin for volunteering with Borders College and Momentum, and Jock Shiells received the Thinking Differently award for his work with Chest, Heart and Stroke Scotland.

Wrapping up the ceremony, Rowlands in Selkirk won the 2018 Loving Our Volunteers Award. Volunteer Centre Borders executive officer Gordon Brown said: “Communities across the Scottish Borders, from Coldingham to West Linton, Newcastleton to Denholm, would not be as healthy and vibrant without the network of volunteers in those areas.

“Loving Our Volunteers is a chance to acknowledge some of the outstanding efforts from just some of the thousands of volunteers in the Scottish Borders who everyday take part in activities which address such issues as social isolation, deprivation, inactivity, and inequality and contribute to sporting and cultural pursuits.

“By celebrating volunteers in this way, we hope volunteers feel valued, and that this will encourage more people in the area to volunteer.

“This is also a reminder that volunteers are not a resource to be taken for granted, but to celebrated as often as possible.”

Scottish Borders Council leader Shona Haslam (Cons) said: “Loving our Volunteers is quickly becoming a key event in the Borders calendar. It is a wonderful showcase of the work done by thousands of individuals in our communities.

“Whether it is youth work, shopping for an elderly neighbour, clearing the snow off your neighbours’ path or mentoring a young family, the work that our volunteers do makes the Borders a better place to live. It is great to have this opportunity to recognise that work.

“I am sure that those receiving their awards today would be the first to say that they are receiving them on behalf of the army that stands behind them. I would like to thank them all, for their boundless enthusiasm, energy and commitment.”