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Wirral Youth Heroes Awards » 2014 Press Release

2014 Press Release

PRESS RELEASE 29 June 2014

WIRRAL YOUNG HEROES HONOURED AT AWARDS CEREMONY

Last friday night at the Floral Pavilion in New Brighton more than 700 guests, including Mrs Abila Pointing MA MBE DL, High Sheriff of Merseyside and Councillor Steve Foulkes, Mayor of Wirral, recognised 24 young people and three adults across 10 categories for their inspirational achievements at the Wirral Youth Heroes Awards 2014.

Max Howe, a 13 year-old student at St. Anselm’s College, was named overall Wirral Youth Hero of 2014 whilst also winning the Courage and Bravery Award for his amazing resilience and compassion towards others after the death of his mother earlier this year. Max commented after winning both his awards: “I’m completely shocked that I won one award let alone two, I’m totally speechless. Everyone who was nominated deserved to win.”

The awards were led by local youth charity Wirral Youth For Christ (Wirral YFC) and hosted by local actress Suzanne Collins, best known for her role in Brookside as Nikki Shadwick. Suzanne said: “It’s been such a privilege to be here tonight, when I was asked to host I couldn’t say yes quick enough. I spent a large part of my childhood in Wirral and it was here that I received the encouragement to go on and become an actress. I am so moved by the stories we’ve heard, every one of the young people here tonight is a star.”

Throughout the night guests heard the stories of the nominees and were entertained by over 100 young people across several different acts. Mrs Abila Pointing, High Sheriff of Merseyside gave an address in which she thanked Martin Dickson, Founder of the awards, for having the foresight and drive to make the awards such a success, commenting: “I am overwhelmed by the talent and full of admiration for the young people here tonight, but let us remember that this is only a small representation of the young heroes living on this peninsula – a hero can be anyone who makes a difference to their community.”

Although winners were announced for each category, every young person that was nominated received recognition and was awarded a certificate by the High Sheriff. Mayor of Wirral, Councillor Steve Foulkes, said: “Young people get some bad press, there is no doubt about it, but tonight we are celebrating the young heroes of Wirral. I leave tonight feeling 10 feet tall, proud of our peninsula’s young people, its youthworkers and parents.”

Martin Dickson, Director of Wirral YFC and Founder of the Youth Heroes Awards, concluded: “What we speak over our young people can define what they become. At Youth Heroes we refuse to join the apparent band-wagon of negativity towards ‘youth’, instead celebrating and affirming the good in our young people. We believe that, like acorns, every young person has the potential to become an oak tree, something magnificent if only we care and nurture them in the best way we know how.

“I would like to thank everyone who made tonight possible, all the local businesses for sponsoring the awards, our host, everyone behind the scenes but most of all, the young people for inspiring hope in their generation.”

For more details about the awards and for a full list of the winners, please visit http://wirral.youthheroes.org.uk

-Ends-

 

PICTURE CAPTIONS:

Youth Heroes Logo Image Link

YH1.jpg – Max Howe (left), Wirral Youth Hero 2014 with his dad and sister. Image Link

YH2.jpg – Max Howe (right), receiving certificate from Mrs Abila Pointing, High Sheriff of Merseyside (left).  Image Link

YH3.jpg – Chloe Hogan (centre), receiving Enterprise and Fundraising Award from Suzanne Collins (right) and Paula Basnett, Chief Executive of Wirral Chamber of Commerce (left). Image Link

YH4.jpg – Councillor Steve Foulkes, Mayor of Wirral giving his address at the awards. Image Link

 

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YH1 YH2 YH3 YH4

 

NOTES TO EDITORS:

Full list of winners and awards sponsors as follows:

Academic Achievement Award – Sian Round (Category sponsored by Wirral Metropolitan College)

 Care for Others Award – Ryan Warrington (Category sponsored by Life Church and Wirral Christian Centre)

The Arts Award – Kieran Howard (Category sponsored by Keeko)

Courage and Bravery Award – Max Howe (Category sponsored by Tidysite)

Enterprise and Fundraising Award – Chloe Hogan (Category sponsored by Wirral Chamber of Commerce)

Response to Illness/Disability Award – Elliot Casey (Category sponsored by Options)

Sporting Achievement Award – Daniel Pass (Category sponsored by the Moore Foundation)

Volunteering Award – Paige Clayton (Category sponsored by VCAW)

Inspirational Adult – Sarah Jarrett, Steve Brick, Nick Johnson (Category sponsored by  the Mitchell Group)

Wirral Youth Hero of 2014 – Max Howe (Category sponsored by Moore Finance)

The Youth Heroes Awards were set up in 2011 and last year received the Inspire Award at the Houses of Parliament for inspiring children and young people. They were founded by local charity Wirral Youth for Christ (WYFC) as a grassroots response to the riots in an effort to celebrate the positive impact that young people have upon society.

In the summer of 2011, WYFC took a group of ‘young heroes’ on a humanitarian mission to central India. The small group of young people raised over £15,000 to make the trip possible and sourced 1000s of crayons, colouring books and modelling balloons to give to the poverty stricken children they met.

Martin Dickson, founder of the Youth Heroes Awards, said: “The riots were reported in India as a major youth uprising and it seemed that many people here in the UK felt this way too, that the young people of today are a selfish, careless and hopelessly self-centred section of society that are a burden! Clearly though, there was a disparity between this view of young people and those that I knew; I felt compelled to act.

“The riots may have shown us that there’s a problem with youth disorder, but it’s only a small part of that picture. Wirral is home to thousands of young heroes and we set out to find the most inspirational of them. Our aim was to give our communities an opportunity to publicly thank and affirm their young heroes for all that they do, and to highlight them as a small glimpse of the massive majority of young people in the Wirral.”

 

NOT FOR PUBLICATION:

For further press information and approval of colour separation charges, please contact Wirral YFC – 0151 647 8400 / office@wirralyfc.org.uk

The organisers would like to express their sincere thanks to Mr Andrew Abernethy for authoring this press release. 

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