Representatives from a number of charities in the area gathered at Morrisons Littlehampton yesterday to see the Lord-Lieutenant of West Sussex, Dame Susan Pyper, present the medal to the store's community champion, Alison Whitburn.
Chris Oliver, store manager, said: "Everyone knows she goes above and beyond in everything she does and is a role model in the community champion role."
Alison was recognised in the Queen's New Years Honours List for services to the community in Littlehampton.
Reading the citation, Deputy Lieutenant Gary Shipton said: "For over three years, Alison Whitburn has been a community champion at the Morrisons in Littlehampton and in this role she supports a wide range of local causes and community groups.
"She constantly seeks opportunities to make a difference locally. She has regularly donated items to the women's refuge and the Littlehampton Foodbank and Community Fridge.
"She has been closely involved in the establishing of a new soup kitchen for local families and has given her own time to prepare and serve these meals.
"Through her extensive network of community links, Alison is instrumental in bringing groups together."He mentioned her work with Brownies and Rainbows, the Juno Project, schools and nurseries, a seed project, the #Ten4Ten mental health initiative and her care packages for the NHS during pandemic.
Mr Shipton continued: "Alison is an outstanding fundraiser. She has raised more than £30,000 for local and national good causes during the past three years.
"She is a shining star in her local community and continually looks for new opportunities to help others."
Alison joined Morrisons in January 2013, one of the original team members at the Littlehampton store. Her positive attitude and outstanding service shone out from the start.
She was asked to trial the community champion position on a part-time basis, a completely new challenge for her that she embraced with open arms.
Alison built strong relationships in the community and was over the moon when the role was made permanent with longer hours.
Even in lockdown, she was determined her support would not stop and it was her commitment and determination that earned her the British Empire Medal.
Alison said: "When I got the letter in November, it was a hard secret to keep. I would like to thank my colleagues. They are a great team and they always help me. They always support fundraising, giving ideas or creating items for sale. So, I feel this is an honour for the whole store."