A STALYBRIDGE man who can truly call himself a community champion has been recognised for his work.
Mike Milenko is one of four Tesco workers to receive a community shield award from Oldham Metro Rotary Club.
The 36-year-old, who lives on Gledhill Street, Stalybridge, holds the position of community champion at the supermarket giant’s store in Oldham town centre.
He and his colleagues in that area have been behind projects including a large-scale canal clean-up, a veterans’ afternoon tea and healthy eating projects in local schools.
Community champions spend a portion of their working week liaising with community groups and finding funding, manpower or other resources to enable projects to take shape.
And Mr Milenko has been bowled over at receiving the recognition, even though his role means he does not know what to expect every day.
He said: “There’s no set pattern to my work day as it can be spent doing lots of interesting and exciting things such as speaking to customers about upcoming events and store donations or being out and about in the local area getting ‘hands on’ with volunteers – clearing a church hall for instance.
“It is fantastic to be able to help organisations working so tirelessly to benefit the community and I feel fortunate that it’s my job to assist them.
“Being nominated and receiving this award means a lot to myself and the other community champions.
“We don’t seek recognition for our efforts although I know for many of us, our job doesn’t stop when we go home at the end of the day.
“We’ve made so many friends within the local area and often spend time going the extra mile to support events and activities, because it’s more than just a job.
“We would like to thank the Rotary Club for the award, it is humbling and an honour.
“We would also like to thank our customers for their support and for helping us to help Tesco give something back to the communities we serve.”
Mr Milenko previously featured in the Correspondent after setting up an online blog, The Marvellous Mishaps of Mike Milenko, which is attracting a growing fan base on Facebook.
“To be honest, it was other people who pointed me towards doing it,” admitted Mike.
“Loads of stuff always happens to me, I’m so clumsy and there’s been a lot of stupid, mad things happen, so I started telling people but with a little bit of a twist on it.
“Tales are slightly elaborated but they’re all based on truth. People were like, ‘I can’t believe this happened to you,’ so on some I’ve got photos to prove it did actually happen!”
Mike, 36, has been blogging since midway through the year after previously telling people what had happened to him through Facebook statuses for a number of years.