A community football coach who works at Amazon’s fulfilment centre in Durham has been named as the final winner of the 2021 Amazon Stars programme, winning a personalised Dream Box prize worth £2,000.

Richard Burtenshaw has taken home the top prize in Amazon Stars, a UK-wide Amazon campaign to thank employees who make an outstanding contribution to their community through volunteering, fundraising, and using their unique skills and talents to help others.

Richard Burtenshaw with his colleagues
Richard Burtenshaw is a COVID-19 team lead at the Amazon fulfilment centre in Durham

Richard joins his colleagues Aizaz Hussain, who works at Amazon’s delivery station in Croydon and Phil Hayden, who works at Amazon’s sortation centre in Haydock, as a winner in this year’s awards. Richard, a COVID-19 team lead at Durham, was nominated by his colleagues for the role he plays in his community through a local grassroots football club called Shincliffe Juniors.

During lockdown, the boys at the club weren’t allowed to train due to COVID-19 guidelines, so Richard devised a series of training videos to keep the players active at home.

To help engage them in their new virtual training routines and to keep spirits up, Richard dressed as different superheroes in the videos, encouraging the boys to stay active and practice their skills.

Richard’s innovative coaching methods saw the club grow from one team to three, increasing the number of young players involved in sport across the community.

Richard’s colleagues thought his voluntary efforts should be rewarded, so they nominated him for the award.

As part of his personalised Dream Box prize, Richard’s club received a £500 donation from Amazon. He has also won a £1,500 travel voucher to take his family to Disneyland Paris in 2022 – something he has always wanted to do.

Richard with his colleague Judith
Richard with his colleague Judith who nominated him for the award

Richard said: “Wow – this is amazing! Thank you very much to my team at Amazon in Durham for nominating me for this award. I really, really appreciate it. During lockdown, I wanted to do something to help the players at our club get through a difficult time and it’s really nice to know that your efforts are appreciated by my colleagues.”

Radek Stegbauer, General Manager at Amazon in Durham, said: “Richard’s efforts to support young footballers in our community during lockdown were both innovative and inspiring and we’re over the moon that he’s won this award. Richard is a popular member of the team here at Amazon in Durham and we’re proud of everything he’s achieved with his club.”

Over the past two years, Amazon employees in our UK operations network have been doing exceptional work to deliver for our customers during the pandemic. Many of them have been combining their great work at Amazon with serving their communities through volunteering their time, raising funds and much more.

To recognise and reward our heroes who have helped others, we established an Amazon Stars programme in 2020, calling on our employees to nominate their colleagues who have gone above and beyond for others. Richard is among hundreds of Amazon employees who go the extra mile for their communities and Amazon Stars is our way of shining a light on their fantastic achievements.

Learn more about the amazing work done by Amazon employees