Young people recognised for work in the Uttlesford community

Sasha Cole

Sasha Cole - Credit: Archant

Thirty eight inspirational youngsters from four secondary schools and five clubs across Uttlesford received prestigious accolades at a charity awards ceremony.

Elizabeth Cole

Elizabeth Cole - Credit: Archant

The annual Jack Petchey Foundation (JPF) Achievement Awards, which recognised young people aged 11-25 and has awarded £364,000 to youth organisations in the district since 2001, were held at at Foakes Hall, Great Dunmow last Tuesday.

Winners included Sasha Cole, 14, from Sampfords Youth Club, who along with a couple of friends wrote a report for the parish council calling for one of the roads in the village to be made safer following the death of a fellow youth club member. Ethan Linwood, 11, died in a car crash in October 2012.

Sasha has also organised, along with her younger brother Josh, and with the help of Thaxted fire service, a charity 10km Fun Run to raise funds for the Ethan Rees Linwood Memorial Charity Fund.

She also helped at the first Ethan Rees Linwood Memorial Fund charity football match, held at Saffron Walden Football Club’s Catons Lane ground in April 2013, where she went round with a bucket collecting loose change from the spectators.

Sasha volunteered to waitress for the evening at the Sampford Baptist Church Carol concert.

Elizabeth Cole, 15, from Helena Romanes School in Great Dunmow who won her award for her continued dedication and commitment to developing gymnastics at a local primary school as well as assisting at gym club at Helena Romanes.

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The school’s JPF coordinator Beverly Louth said: “Elizabeth gives up her own time after school to run the club and has achieved regional success with the team. She is a bright, conscientious and motivated young lady who deserves recognition for all her hard work.”

William Alexander, 15, from Felsted School, was recognised for his outstanding contribution towards The Felsted Model United Nations – a conference for many schools from Essex and also several from overseas.

Each young person honoured had been nominated by their peers and leaders, winning awards for a variety of achievements both great and small but mostly for doing their best.

They received medallions to go with a framed certificate and cheque for £200 to go towards projects in their local community.

Chair of Uttlesford District Council, Councillor Keith Artus, went to the event. He said: “Anybody who is sceptical of today’s young people should attend one of the Jack Petchey Foundation’s award ceremonies. They prove that the compassionate, spirited energy of achievement exists in droves.”