Young people in Lancashire who have made a significant contribution to the community have been recognised at an awards ceremony.
Lancashire’s Celebrate Youth event, organised by Lancashire County Council’s Young People’s Service, had six award categories:
Community Engagement: awarded to Clitheroe Youth Forum, presented by Coun John Shedwick, county council chairman, and Chief Superintendant Stuart Williams.
Beyond Barriers: awarded to Charlotte Addison, from Ribble, presented by Coun Geoff Driver, leader of Lancashire County Council, and 2012 Paralympian Dave Clarke, captain of Team GB Blind 5 A-side Team.
Inspiring Volunteering or advocacy: awarded to Dean Edwards, from Pendle, presented by Coun Albert Atkinson, county council deputy leader, and Alan Donkin, chairman of the Lancashire Youth Strategy Partnership and chief executive of Lancashire Boys and Girls Clubs.
Sporting Achievement: awarded to Infinite Flow, from Hyndburn, presented by Bob Stott, LCC Director for Children and Young People’s Universal and Prevention Services, and Wigan Warriors Rugby League Club.
Improving Lives: awarded to Georgia Swarbrick, from Chorley, presented by Gill Frame, Lancashire Care NHS Foundation Trust Network Director for Children & Families, and chairman of the Lancashire Improving Futures Board, and Graham Ballard, Team GB Paralympian 2012, T36 100m sprint silver medallist (and world record holder).
Artistic Achievement: awarded to Jack Hardwick, from South Ribble, presented by cabinet member for Children and Schools, Coun Susie Charles and Derri Burdon, CEO of Curious Minds, Lancashire Arts Bridge Organisation.
The Pinnacle Award for the overall winner went to Infinite Flow from Hyndburn, a group of free runners who have set up their own project to share their skills with other young people in a safe and fun environment.
Dean Taylor, from the group, said: “We’re working hard to learn the skills needed to teach other young people the basics of free running, and have worked with an international architect and artist to create custom blocks to provide somewhere to practise. We have been awarded funding so that we can provide training and workshops to young people in Hyndburn.”
The awards ceremony, which took place at Park Hall, Charnock Richard in Chorley, was compered by Ali Kahn, company director at Big Comedy Shop, and assisted by Daniel McLaughlin, who won a competition to co-present the ceremony.
Coun Mark Perks said: “Huge congratulations to the six award winners and to the winner of the pinnacle award, Infinite Flow. I was hugely impressed with them and they thoroughly deserve this accolade. The members of the group really are an inspiration to everyone who met them.”
Ali Kahn said: “I was honoured to be involved in an event celebrating young people’s achievements. Young people need to be more celebrated in today’s world - not all tarnished with a negative brush that we read or hear about in the media. I too would like to pass on my congratulations to the award winners and in particular, to Infinite Flow. Free running looks amazing and I very much hope their project continues to go from strength to strength.”