4Uth awards: Some of the latest nominations
With two weeks to go until nominations close, here are some selected nominations for this year's 4Uth awards, managed by Nottinghamshire County Council.
Ashfield – Aisha Shamsaldeen, 13, Kirkby in Ashfield
Aisha was elected as a Member of Youth Parliament for Ashfield in 2017, which is when youth worker Debbie Swanwick first began to work with her. At the age of 12, Aisha was the youngest Member of Youth Parliament for Nottinghamshire and she was very quiet and unsure what the next two years would entail.
The MYP role requires a massive commitment and sacrifice of personal time. Over the past year and a half, Aisha has been fully committed to representing the voice of young people in Ashfield.
She has been busy developing the Ashfield District youth forum, building on relations with her school and working with Members of Youth Parliament across the county to implement local and national campaigns. Aisha’s grown in confidence and the level of support needed has reduced.
Aisha runs meetings, speaks out, asks questions and provides solutions and advice to young people and other professionals.
Aisha has also faced bullying on a personal level and continues to work towards finding solutions for other young people who are being bullied. Through some really tough times, Aisha has always put bullying issues on the agenda and worked with her district and school to help eradicate the emotional scares that bullying causes.
Aisha rarely discloses her personal experience of bullying but intently focuses on how to resolve the problem and effects of bullying for other young people in her district. She is selfless in her endeavours and does not crave the limelight but is busy simply being able to contribute to supporting young people.
Aisha has two siblings, Abdullah and Maisie, and her mother Silvia said: “I am very proud of Aisha. Her self confidence has grown so much and she is there for everyone. She was naturally disappointed when she suffered bullying but has learnt how to deal with things and she has come a long way, not just for herself but in her work helping others.”
Councillor Tracey Taylor, Vice-Chairman of the Children and Young People’s Committee, at Nottinghamshire County Council, said: “Many congratulations to Aisha on being nominated for this year’s 4Uth awards. She has developed so much and I am very pleased she has got a lot out of being a Member of Youth Parliament. These roles are very important to help give a strong voice to young people in our communities.”
Bassetlaw – Joe Lister, 13, Harworth
Joe is 13 years old. He lives in Harworth and Bircotes and attends Serlby Park Academy. He is a regular member at Bircotes Young Peoples Centre, in Whitehouse Road, Harworth and Bircotes.
Nominated by youth worker Deborah Cameron, Joe is fitness mad and his chosen sports are gymnastics and more recently, boxing.
Joe started gymnastics at the age of six to keep him occupied. He attends Retford Gymnastic Club four times a week for two-hour sessions.
Joe has recently taken up boxing and attends Highfield Boxing Club in Doncaster twice a week. He is dedicated and determined about his sport and his fitness.
Joe has represented his gymnastics club in many competitions and has won numerous medals including gold. Joe has also won his place in the regional finals and is through to the Nationals where he will be representing Nottinghamshire. Joe also loves to come to the youth centre in Bircotes when he isn’t training in the gym or the ring.
You wouldn’t think that Joe has a heart condition, but early last year Joe started to get really bad chest pains and after a visit to his local GP he was sent for an ECG electrocardiogram. This is a simple test that can be used to check your heart's rhythm and electrical activity. Sensors are attached to the skin and used to detect the electrical signals produced by your heart each time it beats.
The test showed that Joe’s heart’s electrical activity wasn’t how it should be. However, Joe continues his love of sport. His heart is being closely monitored.
Joe will have to wear a monitor to get a reading from his heart. He also had an appointment for scans at the cardiologist department at the local hospital yet he still continued to train.
Joe’s hard work and dedication paid off in representing Nottinghamshire with his gymnastics. He is training for his first boxing competition this year.
Youth worker Jack Rowland, said: “Joe is a talented well-mannered young man that a lot of the kids at the youth club look up to whilst still having a cheeky chap manner about him. It’s a pleasure to work with him.”
Joe’s Mum Collean comments: “Joe is a normal teenager with attitude and cheek but he is one loving and very caring boy who I am so proud. He always thinks about others. His Grandad Sam is his Hero. He is a very polite well-mannered lad and has lots of friends. He has a passion for gymnastics and boxing but will give 100% in any sport that is thrown his way. As his Mother I couldn’t be any prouder, Joe faces things head on however he is feeling.”
Deborah said: “I think Joe is a remarkable example of “getting on with it” not all young people would have the same attitude with the same condition but not Joe, watch this space …. Olympic 2024 Los Angeles!”
Councillor Tracey Taylor, Committee Vice-Chairman for Children and Young People, at Nottinghamshire County Council, said: “Joe is dedicated to sport and he is not letting his recent health concerns affect him. He is a wonderful role model for other young people. “
Broxtowe – Luca Pandur, 15, Beeston
Luca is 15 and attends Chilwell School. She attends Beeston Young People’s Centre, in West End, Beeston. She has been nominated by youth worker Nikki Loydall.
Luca has been attending Beeston Young People’s Centre on a regular basis for about six months now and in that time she has proved herself to be a very genuine, nice, friendly person.
At the youth club, Luca always volunteers herself to help out, whether that is helping within the tuck shop, helping staff to renovate the notice boards, or helping to set up, run and pack away activities.
She is very friendly and very helpful and always looks out for other young people and her peers. Luca has also started attending the Beeston Young People’s Centre Youth Forum, where she takes an active role in representing other young people and having a voice and influence over what happens within the centre.
Luca also helps out at home quite a lot too – she is originally from Hungary and her parents can often struggle understanding things in the English language. Quite often Luca will be called upon to translate letters, emails, phone calls, conversations and so on, to enable her parents to understand more clearly what is going on in certain situations. She also helps out with childcare with her younger siblings.
Luca plays for a badminton team at Chilwell Olympia in her spare time, which means giving up her own time at weekends (often very early in the morning) as other team mates are relying on her.
Back in December last year, Luca and a couple of her very close friends went through a very tough time. She is part of quite a small, close knit group of friends and tragically, one of the group died in a road traffic accident in Beeston just before Christmas.
The whole group were devastated and in particular Luca, as she had been very good friends with the girl that had died. At such a young age, it is very hard to make sense of something like this and to move forward from it but Luca has dealt with it admirably for someone so young. A couple of days after the accident, Luca and her other good friend Ronnie arranged a flower laying service at the site where the accident happened so that the girl’s family and friends had somewhere to go and meet up and share their grief and their memories. They have also done various things throughout the past few months to acknowledge the young girl’s life.
Nikki said: “Luca is a very friendly and positive young person and is a good influence on other young people that she comes in to contact with. She works at hard at school but also enjoys her time out of school and is very helpful and polite at the same time and I believe that she is an inspiration for other young people, which is why I am nominating her for this award. She should be very proud of herself.”
Councillor Tracey Taylor, Vice-Chairman of the Children and Young People’s Committee, at Nottinghamshire County Council, said: “Luca has been through a very tough time with the loss of one of her close friends but she has done so much to keep her friend’s memory alive. She is a worthy nominee for the4Uth awards for all she has achieved.”
Gedling – Rhiannon Whitmore, 15, Arnold
Rhiannon is 15, and lives in Arnold. She attends The Redhill Academy, and also attends Redhill Young People’s Centre, Redhill Road, Arnold.
She was nominated by youth worker Cathryn Reade who said: “I have known Rhiannon since 2015 through sessions at Redhill Young People's Centre and events in the local Arnold community. She has been attending the centre regularly for the past year.
“I am nominating Rhiannon for her commitment and willingness to help others at the youth centre, and for her efforts in wanting to do something different with her spare time. Rhiannon said that she decided to start coming to the centre more often, as she wanted to ‘stay out of trouble’ and also to avoid being accused of nuisance behaviour in the area.”
During the last year, Rhiannon has been volunteering, by helping with activities at the junior youth club, and with running the tuck shop. Rhiannon has been helping to promote the youth club to younger people in Year 7, and has brought some new members to the club. She said that she does this to help keep the club busy, and to help people expand their friendship groups. She also says she likes making juniors smile. The staff team has noticed that Rhiannon has been very helpful, and is someone that the younger girls will talk to.
At the youth centre, Rhiannon shows maturity and empathy towards others, even when she has perhaps had a low day herself. She admits that she finds school difficult at times, in terms of managing anger and emotions, but she does reflect on her words and actions later, and thinks about how to handle situations differently. Her mum Marie says that Rhiannon is also trying to be more helpful at home and getting into less arguments with her younger brother, showing that she is maturing and trying to control her emotions.
Rhiannon was a participant in the youth service’s ‘Shadow’ event in October last year. This is an overnight orienteering exercise in Sherwood Forest. Due to unforeseen circumstances, on the night, Rhiannon and her friend had to join up with another youth club team. Rhiannon showed resilience and was able to get on with the other team members to complete group work tasks.
Rhiannon put herself forward for nomination to represent the youth centre at the Gedling Youth Council. When asked why she wants to get involved, Rhiannon said that she wants to represent the youth club, and share the views of young people in her area. She wants to voice the opinions and good ideas of young people who may be overlooked or not listened to.
Rhiannon said that she enjoys what she is doing and that youth work is a career she would like to pursue in the future.
Councillor Tracey Taylor, Vice-Chairman of the Children and Young People’s Committee, at Nottinghamshire County Council, said: “Rhiannon is a valued and respected member of her local young people’s centre and she has been heavily involved in recent events and activities. She can be rightly proud of her nomination for this year’s 4Uth awards.”
Mansfield – Andrew Johncock, 15, Mansfield
Andrew, 15, from Mansfield attends Manor Academy and is a member of myplace Young People’s Centre, in Westfield Lane, Mansfield.
He has been nominated by youth worker Jane Penistone. Andrew is a very quiet young man in the youth club, he is exceptionally polite, modest, well mannered, considerate and sets a good example for others to follow and commands respect from his peers in the youth club; making the club a really good environment for everyone.
Andrew lives at home with his mum, dad and younger brother. He is in Year 11 at Manor Academy and current preparing for his exams.
What makes Andrew 'stand out' from other young people is that Andrew is the current British Brazilian Jujitsu champion for his age group (14-17) and weight class (80kg).
Staff were amazed to discover that he has been diligent, dedicated, focused and single minded in his approach to Jujitsu training, which he has been doing for five years with his Sensei Shane Mills in Mansfield.
Andrew has successfully passed four separate gradings to progress in rank and stature, and he has never finished outside the top three. He has also always 'medalled' in all competitions he has entered.
Andrew has shown staff a 'video' taken by his biggest fan (his Dad) of his Championship win, and without the support from his family (his dad in particular), Andrew would not have achieved all he has so far. He says he is driven to achieve great heights like the Brazilian 'Gracie' family and the legend Bruce Lee.
Jane Penistone said: “His humility, commitment, loyalty to his martial arts and his shyness/not wanting to draw attention to himself has meant that Andrew has kept all this quiet from everyone except those in his inner circle.”
Councillor Tracey Taylor, Vice-Chairman of the Children and Young People’s Committee, at Nottinghamshire County Council, said: “It is wonderful to hear that Andrew has enjoyed so much success in his chosen sport which is just reward for the effort, time and energy he puts into training and learning his martial art. Many congratulations to him on his nomination for the 4Uth awards.”
Newark and Sherwood - Alicya-Shai Green-Wyld, 14, Bilsthorpe.
Alicya-Shai, 14, lives in Bilsthorpe and is also a member of Bilsthorpe Young People’s Centre, in Eakring Road, Bilsthorpe.
She has been nominated by youth worker Vickie Dolby, who is based at Bilsthorpe and has been attending the youth centre for four years since she was aged ten.
When Alicya first attended the young people’s centre she was quite cheeky and disruptive in sessions. She would break things deliberately and would not engage with staff members and struggled to make friends when she started to attend the youth club.
She was bullied at school but over time she felt that she had found a release in the youth club and felt able to start talking to the youth workers as she felt she couldn’t talk to her teachers. Alicya kept regularly attending and started making friends and has now progressed into a very polite and respectful young lady.
She was brought up by her mother as her father passed away when she was a toddler. Alicya has been living with her grandparents Kathleen and Ronald whilst her mother is attending university. Alicya has struggled sometimes if her mum is away for more than two weeks at a time as she misses her mum but does appreciate that her mum is doing it for a better life for them.
Her older sister Shannon had a car accident which left her seriously ill and she has difficulty with her walking, Alicya helps her sister to look after her niece and will help clean up and play games entertains her niece and will on occasions make her meals when her sister is poorly.
Alicya has been working on her Bronze Duke of Edinburgh awards where she helped out at the Youth Centre and worked behind the tuck shop and also helping the younger members to bake or help with art and craft activities.
She is a very talented artist who enjoys the arts and crafts activities and she will help create designs to decorate the youth club when it is theme nights or events. She has been nominated by Vickie for her ability to overcome adversity and help others as well as being a positive role model within the youth centre.
Councillor Tracey Taylor, Vice-Chairman of the Children and Young People’s Committee, at Nottinghamshire County Council, said: “Alicya has been through a lot in her young life but she has never given up. We are proud to be able to say she has been nominated for this year’s 4Uth awards for everything she has done.”
Rushcliffe - Harry Royle, 16, Keyworth
Harry lives in Keyworth and attends Southwolds Academy and sixth form. He is also a member of Keyworth Young People’s Centre, in Church Drive, Keyworth.
He has been nominated for the 4Uth awards by youth worker Chris Seager who praised him for his efforts within the centre.
Chris said: “Harry is a pleasure to have in the centre, he always comes in with a smile and is polite and respectful to all.
“This is in contrast to the past when Harry found it increasingly difficult to deal with and control his anger and rage.
“However, he has been able to sort it out by receiving help with this through school and Harry has been put in touch with a counsellor who has helped him redirect his anger and channel this in to positive healthy behaviour through sport.”
Harry has been through a difficult year at home as well as his parents have divorced. With all this going on as well as the social pressures of being a teenager, Harry has been able to succeed in his time at school.
He has improved to a level where he is set to achieve his projected GCSE grades and has earnt himself college interviews and a place on the Police cadet force for Nottinghamshire Police force.
Harry has a great sense of humour and makes everyone feel welcome in the youth club, helping with other members, sorting out competitions and challenges and cooking for the club on occasions.
Councillor Tracey Taylor, Vice-Chairman of the Children and Young People’s Committee, at Nottinghamshire County Council said: “Many congratulations to Harry on his well deserved nomination for this year’s 4Uth awards. He has come through a challenging time and is well respected at school and at his young people’s centre.”
Harry’s mum Ellen, said: “I am immensely proud of Harry and how he has overcome his troubles to be able to control his anger and rage over the last year.
“Harry has had a lot of support from school, a youth worker, at home and it is so nice to hear from Chris Seager, how much he has changed within a year.
“Harry has really improved at school as well and working hard to achieve his grades, he needs for a successful career, Harry has had a change of career choice and is now going to attend Art college, studying subjects which he excels in and to become a gaming developer, as like most teenagers he enjoys gaming.
“Harry continues to amaze me with his confidence, politeness and how much he has changed into a better person.”