Youngsters honoured at awards night

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ORGANISATIONS for young people across the region have been presented with grants in an annual awards ceremony.

The 22nd High Sheriff Community Awards for Tyne & Wear, held by the Community Foundation at the Centre for Life in Newcastle, where Paralympian gold medal swimmer and Young Sports Personality of the Year Josef Craig, from South Shields was guest of honour.

A total of 44 community and voluntary groups all received an award of either £400 or £1,500, with one top award of £2,000 going to St John Ambulance.

The total amount awarded on the night topped £25,000, with groups from North Tyneside particularly successful.

Nine groups based in the borough received £400 while 2344 (Longbenton) Squadron was handed £1,500

Squadron Commanding Officer, Flight Lieutenant Gary Richardson, said: “It is an honour to receive an award that recognises the difference the ‘blue footprint’ makes in the community.

“I thank the Community Foundation and the High Sheriff for this grant, which will allow us to maintain our high standards and aim for further successes to be enjoyed.”

High Sheriff Ashley Winter said: “2344 Squadron thoroughly deserved to win the top award of £1,500, and the panel were unanimous in their decision.

“All of the other groups that received £400 were brilliant and I hope that they continue their excellent work with young people.

“We have had a marvellous night here at the Centre for Life and I’d like to thank Josef for his inspiring speech and for posing for so many photos, he is a remarkable young man.”

Josef said: “It was such an honour to be invited to speak at the High Sheriff Awards and to be able to speak to such a deserving bunch of young people.

“The Community Foundation supported me with a grant before the Paralympics and I know that they do really good work in supporting local community and voluntary groups.”

The High Sheriff Youth Awards Tyne & Wear aim to recognise the good work of community and voluntary groups in the region through engaging young people with meaningful activity.

n 2344 (Longbenton) Squadron –£1,500

n Wallsend Mini Soccer Project – £400

n North Tyneside Disability Forum – £400

n Phoenix Detached Youth Project – £400

n Killingworth Community Consortium – £400

n Wallsend Sea Cadets – £400

n 1st Wallsend Girls Brigade – £400

n 861 (Wideopen) Squadron Air Training Corp – £400

n 5th Whitley Bay (1st Cullercoats) St Georges Scout Group – £400

n 20th Whitley Bay Scout Group – £400