The national disability charity, Sense, has announced that BBC TV presenter, Nikki Fox, will host its annual Sense Awards on Thursday 20th September. The awards, now in their 15th year, recognise the outstanding achievements of disabled people with complex needs, as well as the staff, carers, family members, volunteers and fundraisers that support them.

Past hosts include Paralympic gold-medallist Steve Bate, Dr Dawn Harper and BBC Breakfast presenter, Louise Minchin.

The public are now invited to submit their nominations for categories that include, ‘person of the year’, ‘sibling of the year’, ‘carer of the year’ and ‘volunteer of the year’.

Sense Chief Executive, Gillian Morbey, said:

“It’s a pleasure to have Nikki host the 2018 Sense Awards.

The awards recognise the people we work with who overcome great challenges to achieve remarkable things.

It’s also an opportunity to celebrate the important family members, carers, volunteers and fundraisers that support them.

We’re now delighted to invite nominations for this year’s Sense Awards.”

The Sense Awards will take place on Thursday 20th September at TouchBase Pears in Birmingham. Developed by Sense, TouchBase Pears is a pioneering new centre that provides specialist provision for people with disabilities and facilities for the whole community.

The public have until Sunday 22nd July to submit their nominations via:

About Sense:

Sense is a national disability charity that supports people with complex communication needs, including those who are deafblind, to be understood, connected and valued. Sense supports children, young people and adults in their home and in the community, in their education and transition to adulthood and through its holidays, arts, sports and wellbeing programmes. Sense campaigns passionately for the rights of the people it serves, and offers practical help and support to families and carers, including information, advice, short breaks and family events. For more information please visit

The nomination categories open to the public are:

Person of the Year

Do you know a person who is deafblind, has sensory impairments and/or has complex needs who is excelling in a particular area? Have they shown courage, passion or creativity? Perhaps they have seen success in campaigning, fundraising, awareness-raising or volunteering?

Young Person of the Year

Do you know a person who is deafblind, has sensory impairments and/or complex needs under the age of 25 who has been particularly creative, overcome adversity with courage, or made a positive impact in their community? Perhaps they have learned a new skill and used this to help themselves in their everyday life or to help others?

Sibling of the Year

Do you know someone who has supported their sibling to do something amazing? Have they created social or learning opportunities for their brother or sister? Do you know a child that has taken on extra responsibilities? Perhaps they have shown exceptional compassion or understanding for their age?

Carer of the Year

Do you know a person or family member with caring responsibilities who is remarkable? Have they supported you, or someone you know, to do something new or exciting?

Volunteer of the Year

Has a Sense volunteer that you know shown great dedication and support? Have they developed new skills, shown commitment and exceeded expectations resulting in a positive impact on those they support?

Fundraiser of the Year

Sense’s work would not be possible without the support from our fundraisers. Do you know someone or a group of people who have dedicated their time to fundraising for Sense? Has someone created an exciting event to engage people, or perhaps you know a team that have raised an impressive amount of money for our cause?

Collaboration of the Year

The Collaboration Award is an opportunity to celebrate individuals and organisations that have contributed to our work. Perhaps an organisation has created opportunities for people through donating gifts in kind or raising awareness; working with us to promote a cause or strengthening the support that

The nomination categories not open to the public (voted internally by Sense staff):

Staff Award for Professional Excellence

Do you know someone who works at Sense that has gone above and beyond their role to achieve excellence? Has a person, team or project made a positive impact on the lives of people who are deafblind, have sensory impairments and/or complex needs?

Quality Service Award

The winner of the Quality Service Award is chosen by the Independent Sense Quality Board. The panel look for a Sense service which has shown exemplary evidence of good practice and innovation throughout the year.

Exceptional Contribution to Sense Award

Each year someone will be honoured with accolade of the Peggy Freeman Exceptional Contribution Award.

Parliamentarians of the Year

This award recognises the work of parliamentarians in seeking to support disabled people with complex disabilities.