Boris Johnson hailed Sam McClean, saying he was ‘delighted to recognise his service to others’.
A Belfast sign maker whose stickers praising the NHS spread throughout Northern Ireland has raised more than £100,000 for good causes.
Sam McClean, 47, started printing balloon-shaped vinyl stickers for display on vehicles, homes and in shopfront windows during the coronavirus pandemic.
They featured a rainbow at the top and earned the praise of Prime Minister Boris Johnson, who has awarded Mr McClean a Points of Light award.
“I’m just a normal person and this has given me a new outlook on life,” said Mr McClean.
“Now I want to do more – I’m proud to be able to donate to these good causes.
“Both sides of the community have come together to deal with Covid-19 in Northern Ireland and this money will be put back into the community for everyone.”
Among those benefiting from his fundraising are Air Ambulance NI and St John Ambulance NI, while care homes have also been able to buy personal protective equipment (PPE) using the proceeds.
The Prime Minister said: “Sam has dressed the windows of Belfast with rainbows, imbuing us with hope and uniting us in gratitude for the courage of all those on the front line who are risking their lives to save others.
“He has raised a fantastic amount to support NHS charities and I am delighted to recognise his service to others.”
Northern Ireland Secretary Brandon Lewis said he was a great example of how people can make a positive contribution to their communities during the Covid-19 crisis.