British Empire Medal Awarded to Director of Inspira

Inspira Director Pete Alger, who lives in Ulverston with his wife and daughter, has been recognised in the Queen's Birthday Honours list for his work with young people in Cumbria and Lancashire.

Mr Alger, who has worked with Inspira for 30 years, has been awarded a British Empire Medal (BME). BMEs are awarded for 'hands-on' service to the local community.

Quick to spot the next development within youth work, Pete has been instrumental in establishing and managing innovative schemes such as SpeakUp, Wheels to Work and the pilot for National Citizen Service.

Pete Alger said, "I'm ecstatic not only for the award but the honour of being nominated. It's a real recognition that rural areas can be at the forefront of youth work and youth development."

The social action project 'Operation Raleigh' in the Bahamas was Pete's first taste of professional youth work in 1983. Pete likened this time to the current National Citizens Service (NCS) programme. "I have always enjoyed encouraging young people to get involved in social action and showing them, you can get more out when you put more in".

Pete started his professional youth work career in 1989 in Buckinghamshire and has been involved in youth, community and adult development work since gaining his qualification as a youth and community worker at Leicester Polytechnic.

"It's great to see the youth workers at Inspira setting off on their career path," says Pete. "It's been a pleasure to support their development too in the sector."

Pete has always been committed to voluntary work and has been instrumental in founding and supporting several 3rd sector youth work initiatives in Cumbria and Lancashire. Having worked and gained youth work experience in various roles, Pete joined Inspira, initially developing youth services through an integrated operational delivery model targeting young people from the 'at risk' groups and offering universal services.

Pete said, "without organisations like Inspira, so much of this youth work would be lost. Inspira has allowed me to take a few calculated risks, which has paid off".

Mark Bowman, Chief Executive of Inspira, said: "We are delighted that the work Pete has carried out in our local communities has been recognised. He has shown a longstanding commitment to young people and championing youth work in the area; well done, Pete."