Scout Bryony gives 110 per cent to fundraising and activities

PUBLISHED: 18:32 14 January 2009 | UPDATED: 21:40 31 May 2010

Bryony Cotterill Picture: SUBMITTED

Bryony Cotterill Picture: SUBMITTED

A SAFFRON Walden Scout who has helped youngsters at home and abroad is an early entrant in a competition that recognises and rewards young role models who make a difference by giving to others. Explorer Scout Bryony Cotterill, of Readings Close, was nomin

A SAFFRON Walden Scout who has helped youngsters at home and abroad is an early entrant in a competition that recognises and rewards young role models who make a difference by giving to others.

Explorer Scout Bryony Cotterill, of Readings Close, was nominated for an Essex Police Young People of the Year award by Laura Bunting, leader of the Explorers at the 1st Newport Scout Group.

She picked 16-year-old Bryony out for her dedication towards fundraising and activities.

"Bryony is always quick to volunteer to help. She does this willingly, very selflessly and without moaning. She is respected by the Scouts, cubs and adults," said Ms Bunting.

"Although sometimes reluctant to try new things, with a little encouragement she usually takes up new challenges. This has built up her confidence. She has also made lots of friends and become a team player."

In addition to her Wednesday meetings, Bryony is now a young leader with the group's 40 cubs who meet on Monday nights in Jikes Hall, Frambury Lane, Newport. She joins in games, helps the cubs train for their badges and supports them on parades as well as attending their camps.

Bryony was also part of a 50-strong Scouts and Explorers team to visit orphanages and homes for the elderly in Romania last year. She took part in every fund-raising event, helping to raise more than £9,000.

The Scouts then hosted 37 of their counterparts, mainly girls, from Romania with Bryony again playing a full part in raising the £11,000 costs.

"Because we needed more people to be involved in raising money, Bryony took it upon herself to encourage other Explorers to have a go," added Ms Bunting.

As a result of Bryon's involvement, all her family now play their part with the group. Older sister Emma, 20, is an assistant Scout leader, 11-year-old younger sister Hope is a Scout, while dad Dave is chairman and mum Julie is treasurer.

Bryony said that she followed a friend into Scouts and she has enjoyed the organization ever since. She particularly enjoys the camps.

She was helping the cubs so as to win her Duke of Edinburgh's gold award. "I enjoy helping young people and playing a part in the community," she said. "I enjoy teaching them and watching them learn at camp."

Bryony, who won a Chief Scout Award last year for expeditions and community service, is in the sixth-form at Saffron Walden County High School and wants to be a veterinary nurse. She said she was surprised but honoured to be nominated for YOPEY.

Her efforts have also been recognised by the head of children and young people's policing team, Insp Kevin Whipps. He said: "Organisations like Scouts can offer so much to young people giving them confidence and the chance to try things they otherwise wouldn't as is evident with Bryony.

"By helping out as a young leader, Bryony is giving the young cubs in her group a positive role model and she clearly recognises and enjoys playing a part in her community."

YOPEY, which has been endorsed by Prime Minister Gordon Brown, is open to young people aged 10-25 who have a chance to win a cash prize to share with the community.

This is the 26th YOPEY and it is sponsored by Essex Police and Essex Police Authority, who have put up £2,000 for young people to win. Young finalists and their supporters will be going to the Radisson hotel, Stansted Airport, in March to find out who has won the top prize of £1000.

* To nominate a young person, aged 10-25, who gives to others and is a positive role model, visit www.yopey.org or write to Essex Police YOPEY, PO Box 103, Hare Street, Ware SG9 0XD for an entry form. Young people can enter themselves. Entries will close on January 31, 2009.

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