On Friday, 22 November, the Duke of Cambridge met thirty young people, who carry the award set up in his mother’s memory for their immense impact on society, the Diana Award; among them were two of North East Lincolnshire's Young Reporters.
The Diana Award, which has the Prime Minister David Cameron as Patron, was set up as a lasting legacy to Princess Diana’s belief that young people have the power the change the world for the better, empower thousands of young people to tackle social issues that affect other young people using a peer-led approach. Award holders come from all walks of life and many have challenging and disadvantaged backgrounds, however what they share is a deep sense of social responsibility.
The Young Reporters scheme is a partnership between North East Lincolnshire's Young People's Support Service and Grimsby Telegraph. It has seen several cohorts of local young people aged 12-19 years write columns for the Grimsby Telegraph and received the Diana Award in July 2013 for:
'Being Diana Champion Volunteers in the local community and working to challenge the negative stereotypes of young people through their thoughtful columns'.
The Young Reporters were delighted to receive the award in recognition of their commitment to challenging stereotypes and encouraging the community to think about important topics and show young people in a positive light.
Last Friday, His Royal Highness met and spoke to the thirty young people who took part in three separate workshops. These focused on training for anti-bullying ambassadors, an employability mentoring session drop in session for disadvantaged young people and project management skills. The Young Reporters from North East Lincolnshire who met the prince are Abbie Dewhurst and Matt Clarkson. Abbie also had the opportunity to ask His Royal Highness a couple of questions.
Tessy Ojo, chief executive for the Diana Award said:
“We know that these young people carry this award set up memory of Princess Diana with pride and they were absolutely thrilled to meet the Duke. For the young people who receive this award it is truly life-changing and often comes at a pivotal time in their life. Through our training, mentoring and development programmes we empower and motivate them to continue contributing their communities throughout their life.”
Cllr Ian Lindley, portfolio holder for children's services said:
"We are extremely proud of all of our Young Reporters and delighted that Abbie and Matt were given this wonderful opportunity to meet the Duke of Cambridge, representing all of our other wonderful reporters. The Diana Award will encourage them to continue their excellent work and hopefully inspire others to volunteer in their community. "
For more information on the Diana Award or to make a nomination please visit www.diana-award.org.uk
NOTES TO EDITORS
Attached - Abbie and Matt's accounts of the day and a couple of images taken while they were there.
The Diana Award - exists to celebrate young people who support others and strive to improve their communities. 38,000 inspirational young people have received a Diana Award to date for demonstrating the qualities associated with the late Princess; compassion and a selfless commitment to improving the lives of others. Once award holders receive the award they join the Diana network, a programme offering young people the opportunity to volunteer, gain valuable life skills and put these into practice with internships and work placements in the UK. Young people can also join the Anti-Bullying Ambassadors programme, the ideal opportunity to speak up and become the voice of anti-bullying in their communities.
Abbie Dewhurst - During her teenage years, Abbie took part in the Duke of Edinburgh’s Scheme and received her gold award this year at St James’ Palace on her 20th birthday. She has already achieved a broad range of media experience including writing and presenting for local TV heralding young people in the workplace, securing voluntary work with a radio station in Lincoln and of course, her columns and regular blogs for the Diana Award Winning Young Reporters. Abbie epitomises the ethos of the Young Reporters in challenging the negative stereotype of young people and is an aspiring journalist who is an inspiration for many.
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