Inspirational young people recognised at youth awards

Young people who have excelled, overcome obstacles or made sacrifices to help others had their achievements recognised at the Camden Youth Awards.

Our awards, organised by the Council’s youth service, highlight the extraordinary achievements of the young people of Camden and the incredible journeys they took to get there.

They also help inspire young people and those who work with them. As well as the 10 individual awards for young people, there are four ‘best practice’ categories for youth projects and organisations which support them.

This year’s awards ceremony last night (Tuesday, 19 March) was hosted for the first time at Camden House, in Camden Market.

Camden Youth MP Athian Akec told guests at the event: "There's simply nothing like growing up in Camden. Camden's future would not be as bright without its young people and the youth workers who help to turn their talents into reality."

The individual Camden Youth Award winners were:

  • Personal Journey Award – Hannah Maxwell-Lynch. For showing courage in overcoming personal challenges, including being a carer to her father after losing her mother. Hannah is a talented musician, who plays the piano, guitar and flute, is in the top set in maths as well as science, plays for the school in most sports and has just been made captain of the school dodgeball and table tennis team. She's a regular at Coram's Fields Youth Centre which she loves attending.
  • Young Volunteer Award – India Cummins. India starting attending the girls-only programme at Somers Town Youth Centre aged 14. Her confidence grew and she started volunteering and leading the girls’ group. She has developed her skills and volunteered as a boxing coach at Somers Town and continues to actively encourage and engage young men and women.
  • Art and Culture Award – Amelia Tolga. Amelia has attended a dance and / or a drama course as part of Camden Summer University (CSU) for several years. She experiences challenges around speech, language and communications but puts herself forward and actively participates and contributes to drama workshops and performances. Last summer she successfully completed and performed in CSU’s most testing drama course with the Royal Academy of Dramatic Art (RADA) and has since decided to apply to drama college.
  • Adult Volunteer Award – Ruhul Amin. Ruhul has given 10 years and 3,000 volunteering hours to Somers Town Youth Centre and the community. He introduced the idea of international volunteering to staff and young people – raising over £100,000. This project has taken 60 young people into global destinations, including Brazil, South Africa and Bangladesh. He is currently leading a group of young people to raise money for another international volunteering project.
  • Positive Role Model Award – Shahidur Rahman. Shahidur has demonstrated strength and courage when faced with challenges and difficult situations. He remained focused and committed to finding an apprenticeship. He’s also helped organise a community BBQ with a focus on local homeless people.
  • Sport and Physical Activity Award – Olivia Gilbert. Olivia plays football for Camden School for Girls, Camden Youth FC Under 13s and Arsenal FC’s player development programme. She is a school PE ambassador and participates in a range of clubs, including netball and trampolining, as well as representing her school in sporting competitions, including cricket and football.
  • Apprenticeship Award – Adele Butler. Over the last two years, Adele has shown great determination in seeking employment. She decided she wanted to learn a trade and with the help of the Council's detached youth work team and King’s Cross Construction Skills Centre, she’s successfully applied for a Camden apprenticeship and is now working and studying to be a plumber.
  • Inspirational Young Person Award – Maruf Ahmed. Since Maruf joined Regent High School in Year 7, he has always had a smile on his face, despite the issues he faces daily with his physical disability. Maruf has never allowed his disability to hinder anything he puts his mind to and is an inspiration to all students in Year 9 and the entire student body at Regent High School.

The group winners were:

  • Supporting Vulnerable Young People Award – King's Cross Brunswick Neighbourhood Association (KCBNA) Film Project. Young people in partnership with youth workers made a film highlighting their concerns around knife crime. Some of the young people who participated were related to or knew young men who were fatally stabbed.
  • Best Practice, Health and Wellbeing – Bare Peas (Wac Arts). Bare Peas is an inclusive, interactive video game designed to tackle obesity for young people with disabilities and other young people who struggle to engage with physical activity.
  • Youth Volunteering Project – Peer Education led by Fitzrovia Youth in Action. The Camden Peer Education Project supported young volunteers in youth clubs and schools across Camden to design and deliver awareness workshops about issues of concern. 130 young volunteers took part and delivered 17 campaigns on issues such as bullying, youth conflict, young men needing to express feelings, depression, relationships, and much more. Over 1,000 young people participated in workshops delivered by young volunteers from Fitzrovia Youth in Action.
  • Young People’s Partnership – South Camden Together (Somers Town Youth Centre, Coram’s Fields, KCBNA). The South Camden Together project ran for five weeks, bringing together 58 young people from across the south of Camden. They established a pop-up social enterprise where they were able to run their own lemonade stall at Camden Market. This experience provided young people with a taste of employment, they learned critical skills, including budgeting, business planning and customer service skills.
Congratulations to our amazing winners and thank you to the youth workers, teachers and volunteers who have supported them, as well as to their families.

Over the past year, the Council’s youth service worked with about 4,000 young people across the borough, with around 923 young people achieving some form of accreditation such as the Duke of Edinburgh’s Award or AQA awards. Our council and local voluntary sector youth projects support young people to be active citizens, while enabling them to develop their potential, stay safe, gain skills and knowledge and enjoy a wide range of activities and experiences to prepare them for the next stage of their lives.

Councillor Abdul Hai, Cabinet Member for Young People and Cohesion