The Young Ambassador Award, sponsored by Mappin & Webb, recognises young people who are exceptional Young Ambassadors for The Trust, these young people volunteer their time to share their personal experiences and inspire others.

Earlier this year, Mappin and Webb invited a group of young entrepreneurs along to an Enterprise day, to teach them about the luxury goods business. 

Winner: Efaz Ahmed

Efaz got kicked out of school and left with no GCSE's. His business teacher told him that he was useless and never get anywhere in life. He became embroiled in violence and street crime.

Efaz’s life came crashing down when he was forced to undergo major eye surgery where he lost 90% of his vision and almost lost his life. He was told that he could never play football again and suffered from severe depression, losing all hope for himself. 

After recovering, Efaz took four of his cousins to the local grounds for a kick about and became a mentor to them.

His life changed when Get Started with Football programme opened him up to new opportunities. He went on to join the Enterprise programme and started his own social enterprise, NEBA Football, that uses football to encourage community integration and personal development. 

Efaz, who is also involved with the Big Lottery funded initiative Talent Match, has become a confident media performer and a hugely successful ambassador and advocate for the work of The Trust.

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Finalist: Laura Tombs

Laura, 26, from Burnley, Lancashire, was 12 when she began suffering from emotional and sexual abuse. The abuse carried on for years and by the age of 14, she was suffering with anxiety and depression, and began self-harming. Feeling she had no-one to turn to, Laura’s life became a web of secrets.

During her recovery, she heard about our Team programme and decided to give it a go.

It took guts for her to take part, but she thrived in the environment and went on to complete three more subsequent Prince’s Trust programmes. She went on one programme which gives disadvantaged young people the skills and confidence to change their lives for the better, and two more confidence building programmes called Get Started.  

Laura now works for a mental health training charity and has also developed a training programme for professionals around eating disorders. She is also studying health and social care at college.

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Finalist: Umar Saeed 

Umar, 27, born in Moss Side Manchester, raised in East London. Danger followed him wherever he went. He had a troubled childhood, growing up in a family environment of drug abuse, he rebelled and found himself taking drugs, as well as importing and exporting them abroad.

Persuaded by his probation officer, Umar joined a Prince's Trust programme where he achieved things he never thought were possible. Next he joined our Get into NHS programme, and it was during this course that he discovered a passion for working in the care sector.

When the course ended, Umar was offered a job and then became a Young Ambassador.

Painting a very real picture of his past, Umar became one of The Trust's most requested Young Ambassadors and once earned a standing ovation that lasted several minutes.

He currently works as a support worker for the elderly, and is studying his Level 3 in Health and Soicla Care, volunteers at a homeless shelter and has ambition of becoming a social worker. His turnaround is nothing short of extraordinary.

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