Youth volunteering projects celebrated at annual High Sheriff awards

Suzy Harvey, the High Sheriff of Hertfordshire publicly recognised and rewarded seven organisations for their work with young people at the 2019 High Sheriff Awards ceremony
The annual awards held at County Hall in Hertford, celebrated the excellent work undertaken by charitable groups and individuals who have made a significant contribution to Hertfordshire’s communities.

This year the awards focused on highlighting organisations and young people who are involved in youth projects, social justice and youth related crime prevention.

Suzy Harvey said “During my year as High Sheriff I have been privileged to gain insight into some of the amazing and positive work taking place in our county to help young people to reach their full potential. We were delighted to receive a large number of applications for the awards and it was an extremely difficult job to shortlist these.

“Members of the judging panel were inspired by each of the shortlisted organisations and agreed that all the candidates were equally fantastic at working in the areas of youth related crime prevention, youth projects and social justice.

“I am delighted to have able to recognise some of the very special people and organisations across Hertfordshire for the work they do in the county.”

The groups recognised were:
  • East Herts Volunteer Police Cadets - which incorporates the Hertford and Ware Volunteer Police Cadets and the Bishop’s Stortford Police Cadets. Over 100 cadets, aged 13 to 18 years old, who meet weekly in a programme that builds confidence and communication through social action projects.

  • Future Living Hertford – who support victims of addiction and domestic abuse through the provision of a safe, non-judgemental therapeutic environment.

  • Herts Inclusive Theatre – who run an inclusive theatre group in South West Hertfordshire. The group uses drama, music, movement and theatre techniques to build confidence and communication skills in young people, including those with special needs.

  • Herts Young Homeless – a countywide young person's homelessness charity operating in Hertfordshire. Their Live Life project actively involves young people with lived experiences of homelessness in the running of the charity.

  • Insider Access – a not for profit, social enterprise which focuses on the engagement of non-traditional learners from disadvantaged backgrounds into informal, non-formal and accredited learning to help them to achieve their full potential.

  • North Mymms Youth Project - a youth club for young people aged 10-16 which offers weekly meetings as well as activities and residentials. As part of the club’s membership all young people are involved in community service projects.

  • The Gifted – a charity that supports young people, often from disadvantaged backgrounds, to unlock their potential through workshops and projects.

In recognition of their outstanding work each organisation received a financial contribution funded through the High Sheriff’s Fund, a charitable fund managed by Hertfordshire Community Foundation.

Helen Gray, Foundation Director for Hertfordshire Community Foundation said: “We are delighted to once again be involved in the High Sheriff Awards which give countywide recognition to the outstanding work of groups in Hertfordshire. This year’s awards have helped to highlight how youth projects are contributing to improving the levels of self-confidence and well-being of local young people. Congratulations to each of the award winners and thank you to all those who put forward a nomination.”

In addition to the High Sheriff Awards, High Sheriff Personal Awards were also presented to the following people:
  • Verity Bramwell, of the Ollie Foundation, for her key role in the organisation’s success. The charity is devoted to stopping teenagers and young people from taking their own lives.

  • Andrea Hill for being the driving force behind the very successful St Albans Legacy Project which commemorated the Armistice Centenary in the St Albans district via an exhibition at the St Albans Museum + Gallery.

  • Ben Wallace (of Bishop Stortford) for his involvement in Grove Cottage Mencap. The award is to recognise his personal growth and development gained through his ongoing volunteering at the charity’s café and nursery.

  • The Fit, Fed and Read project, delivered by Herts Sports Partnership, is confronting the growing issues of hunger, isolation and physical inactivity in children from low income families during school holidays by providing free programmes in disadvantaged neighbourhoods.

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