On 9th November 2016, we celebrated in style at The Roundhouse in Derby for The Prince's Trust and TK Maxx & HomeSense Celebrate Success Awards.          

Each young person who has been nominated for Celebrate Success has a unique story. Be inspired by our East Midlands Celebrate Success finalists. 

Young Achiever of the Year

The Young Achiever of the Year award, sponsored by TK Maxx and HomeSense, recognises the success of young people getting into employment, training or education and overcoming substantial barriers to transform their lives.

Finalist: Robert Wadsworth

Diagnosed with brain cancer at 10, Robert underwent surgery twice, followed by intensive treatment. He was cleared of the disease, but was left with memory and speech impairments.

After leaving school Robert felt lost, without any idea what he was going to do with his life. 

He was passionate about gardening but had heard he couldn’t get a job in horticulture as he didn’t have the necessary construction skills required for landscaping.

During The Prince’s Trust Get into Construction programme, Robert undertook a work placement on a construction site, gained his qualifications and made new friends. His confidence soared. 

Using his new experience and skills gained, Robert was successful in being appointed as general estate worker at Trent College in Nottingham.

His enthusiasm for working with plants became apparent to his employers and when the opportunity arose, they transferred him to work in the grounds as a groundsman – his dream job.

Finalist: Lucy Hunt

Isolated and unemployed, Lucy couldn’t find the motivation to get herself out of her situation. She had struggled at school and before finding The Prince’s Trust Team programme, spent several years without a job. This left her lacking in confidence and unsure about the future.

At first, she was very shy and didn’t engage with the course. She would step back and let others take a lead but gradually she began to offer contributions. Lucy held attention from her peers because she had such inspiring ideas. Her communication skills developed rapidly and she was able to coax other reticent speakers to join in the group discussions.

Lucy’s success inspired her to volunteer for The Trust and she has helped with recruiting and running further Team cohorts.

She has found her dream and now Lucy is studying at the University of Cumbria for a degree in Youth and Community Work.

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Young Ambassador of the Year

The Young Ambassador of the Year award, sponsored by The Workplace Depot, 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.

Winner: Efaz Ahmed

Efaz got kicked out of school and left with no GCSE's. He later became embroiled in gang culture and illegal activities and his life came crashing down when he was forced to undergo major eye surgery.

During eye surgery, Efaz lost 90 per cent 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 The Prince’s Trust Get into Football programme opened him up to new opportunities. He went on to join The Trust’s Enterprise programme and started his own social enterprise 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.

Finalist: Carlie Hayward

Carlie’s tumultuous childhood forced her to take on adult roles and responsibilities at a young age. She had to provide all the care for her family whilst also trying to cope with her education and an exhausting job, working late hours at a pub.

The enormous strain of this regime drove Carlie to desperation and she attempted to take her own life. When it all became too much, Carlie left home but within a year her twin sons were born.

Advice from a nurse motivated Carlie to end an abusive relationship and take up exercise to improve her physical and mental health. 

Inspired by her success, Carlie decided she could help others by setting up her own fitness business. Training, mentoring and finance provided by The Prince’s Trust Enterprise programme gave Carlie the chance she needed and now she promotes The Trust through her inspirational talks as a Young Ambassador. She has also been involved with the Big Lottery funded initiative, Talent Match.

Finalist: Immanuel Masih

Experiencing major problems with his health and in his education, Immanuel became isolated and lost all confidence. The early death of his father put severe strain on the family. 

Immanuel was diagnosed with multiple disabilities and missed much of his education. He lacked effective communication skills and was bullied in and out of school.

Demotivated by persistent difficulties, he dropped out of his university course and was unemployed and socially isolated for two years. A referral to The Prince’s Trust Team programme transformed his life, giving him opportunities, friends and motivation to resume his degree.

Immanuel has embraced all The Trust has offered him in training and support. He is giving that support back as a highly successful and articulate advocate for The Trust’s work. He travels widely, using his role to overcome personal challenges. 

Immanuel, who has also been involved with the Big Lottery funded initiative Talent Match, plans to start his own educational games business.

Finalist: Tara Shad

Tara had always felt different to others. Without self-confidence, she struggled socially and felt anxious at the prospect of meeting people or even leaving the house. At one stage, Tara began locking herself in her room and stopped eating.

Despite experiencing on-going anxiety, she managed to maintain her enthusiasm for fashion and took a college course. However, another blow fell when her grandfather, to whom she was especially close, died. At 26 Tara was diagnosed with Asperger’s Syndrome and determined to learn all she could about the condition. She developed coping skills and decided to set up a business to inspire other young people with special needs.

She joined The Prince’s Trust Enterprise programme and founded Crowd Capture Jewellery, textiles and clothing business. Tara went on to become a highly active and enthusiastic Young Ambassador, travelling the country to promote The Trust by sharing her own story.

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Enterprise Award

The Enterprise Award, sponsored by NatWest, recognises young people who have overcome barriers and achieved success in creating a sustainable business or a community or social enterprise.

Winner: Katie Lyth

Katie almost died as a result of severe physical abuse and only major surgery saved her life. Later in life, she was taken into care and eventually adopted.

Initially, Katie did well in education, gaining a place at university but at 19 she dropped out, taking jobs in pubs and nightclubs. At 22 she became pregnant and subsequently married and had another child.

Katie felt trapped and frustrated as a stay-at-home mum, despairing of finding rewarding work to fit around her family’s needs. She had often wanted to start a business and a concept began to develop in her mind relating to affordable bridal wear, but she lacked confidence and knowledge.

The Prince’s Trust Enterprise programme supported her with a business plan and a mentor talked everything through with her. As a result, she set up her business House of Oliver.

Katie has not looked back. She now employs staff, some of whom have special needs, and she trains and mentors them. 

Finalist: Michael Moore

Drumming is in Michael’s heart. He has used drumming to overcome many barriers of his own and he has created a business which helps other young people with lifelong disabilities.

Devoted to music from an early age, he began taking lessons and this passion sustained him through many difficult years in his school life.

After leaving school, he completed an apprenticeship in administration and progressed to a higher level before realising this career was not for him. He experienced depression until he was advised to go into music full time as that was clearly his talent. 

Uniting his two interests, business and music, he set up MM Drum School in Derby, creating bespoke services for people with autism and other special needs, as well as providing exceptional services for main stream customers. 

The Prince’s Trust Enterprise programme helped him with finance and tax issues and with his business plan. He gained enormously from his mentor, absorbing all the advice offered and becoming increasingly confident.

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Rising Star Award

The Rising Star Award, sponsored by Rolls-Royce, recognises young people who, despite having faced substantial personal obstacles, are in sustainable employment as a result of a Prince’s Trust programme.

Winner: Milos Novak

Milos’s childhood was an emotional rollercoaster and things came to a head when his father was sent to prison when Milos was just seven. Lacking the support he needed to focus on his education, at 10 he dropped out altogether.

Counselling helped him deal with the impact of his father’s imprisonment, which enabled him to return to school. 

When Milos himself became involved in a violent incident, he too received a custodial sentence which prevented him from completing his A level exams and his mental health deteriorated.

Everything changed on The Prince’s Trust Make Your Mark course, delivered by Marks & Spencer. Benefitting from a mentor and from learning all aspects of the work, Milos showed a tremendously positive attitude. He demonstrated a high level of skill and was offered a 12-week contract which became a permanent job.

He turned down a potential graduate role at BMW to stay at Marks & Spencer and is aiming to be a Section Manager.

Finalist: Andrew Eaton

Experiencing the blow of redundancy and unable to provide for his young family, Andrew felt desperate after being unemployed for two years. 

Losing confidence that he would ever find work and with his self-esteem plummeting, Andrew enrolled on The Prince’s Trust Get into Hospital Services course and undertook employability training and a Level 1 qualification in Health Awareness. 

At the same time, he worked in the logistics department, moving items around the hospital, sorting out deliveries and handling refuse.

Demonstrating total commitment to the programme and his work, he was present and punctual every single day and would often encourage others to do the same. His confidence grew and he became a key member of the group, always showing a can-do attitude and maximum determination.

After the course, he was quickly signed up to the Carillion agency to work in NHS facilities and subsequently became a permanent member of staff, having demonstrated total reliability and commitment.

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Community Impact Award

The Community Impact Award, sponsored by Woodhead Group, recognises the positive contribution young people make to their local community.

Winners: Ilkeston Team 175

Self-confidence was a feeling which none of Ilkeston Team 175 had ever experienced before they embarked on their journey with The Trust. 

The group from The Prince’s Trust Team programme chose to work at SV2, a charity supporting the victims of sexual violence as they agreed this would have the most impact on the lives of others. Their task was to decorate two therapy rooms and an office. 

Working together, they planned and allocated responsibilities and made sure everybody could try all the different skills such as painting mural boards or decorating walls. 

They learned to trust themselves and each other, how to work through difficulties and to persevere in order to complete a task. They also learned how to gain and use support from others to achieve goals.

The team developed outstanding partnerships, learned the importance of communicating effectively and were able to use their experience to find direction and motivation in their own lives.

Finalist: Kettering Team 43

All the young people on Kettering Team 43 had come up against multiple barriers to success, experienced failure at school and lacked any motivation or sense of purpose in their lives. 

Some of them had turned to drink and drugs to cope with their problems, some had been involved in offending behaviour.

As part of The Prince’s Trust Team programme, they chose to enhance their local railway station to make it more attractive and accessible and improve the image of their town for visitors arriving at the station. This decision was motivated by their determination to give something back to their community in order to counter negative stereotyping of young people.

They raised funds and donations and negotiated roles, working outside through cold and frosty weather. 

The course helped mould them into a strong, motivated unit, capable of achieving their goal. Every member of the team moved on to a job, a college course or voluntary work.

Finalist: Rushden Team 29

A group of 16 young people, adrift and without focus in their own lives, came together through the Team programme to develop an informational video designed to support those with substance issues, on behalf of a family support charity.

All these young people had experienced failure in the formal education system and lacked the confidence to succeed and social and communication skills. 

The project, which was part of The Prince’s Trust Team programme, required a high level of cooperation and reliability. They needed to be adaptable and agree roles and stick to a timescale in order to complete the video by the deadline, whilst also completing renovation work at a local football club.

All participants in the project went on to employment or training, apprenticeships or voluntary work and all felt a sense of achievement. They have surprised themselves by their self-confidence and success in gaining social and work-related skills. Now, they all have direction in their lives.

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Breakthrough Award

The Breakthrough Award, sponsored by HSBC, recognises the progress of young people in overcoming barriers and developing new skills.

Winner: Chloe Parker

A breakdown at 13 sent Chloe’s life into a sharp downward spiral. Diagnosed with a Global Developmental Delay she became angry and upset and was unable get the support which would have helped her achieve. 

Chloe got into fights and communications with her family broke down completely. She would lock herself in her room, depressed and confused, feeling totally isolated.

It was then that she joined The Prince’s Trust Team programme. Chloe had a long way to go and she started off anxious and uncommunicative. It was the residential experience which proved the turning point for her. She had to engage with her peers to complete the tasks successfully and the difference in her outlook was noticeable.

Chloe’s work placement at Asda was a stunning success. Using her initiative to excel, she left with two outstanding references and the promise of a job offer when a vacancy arose.

Finalist: Sam Dixon

When he was just seven Sam’s mother died of cancer. Grief impacted on every area of his young life as he struggled to come to terms with the loss. Consequently, he made some bad choices as a teenager and as a young man.

His resulting depression drove him to turn to alcohol for support, which just made things worse.

Despite this, Sam was willing to enrol on The Prince’s Trust Team programme. On the residential he began to mix with the group, showing natural leadership in problem-solving. He quickly gained respect and others looked to him for guidance in challenging situations, building his confidence.

Sam’s quality of life drastically improved, helping him to combat his depression and alcohol dependency. 

Shortly after the course finished, Sam found full time work with a metal rendering company.

Finalist: Scott Sutton

Scott was born with a tumour on his liver and needed life-saving surgery. His parents split when he was very young and he was brought up by his mother. 

Poor motivation led to failure in formal qualifications and Scott spent four years after leaving school in a fruitless search for employment. He became demotivated and despondent, angry at the situation he had allowed himself to get in to.

Scott needed support to get his life on track. On The Prince’s Trust Team programme he was helped to see that he had to leave the past behind and make a fresh start, concentrating on his future. 

Scott engaged fully, attending every day, surprising even himself. His enthusiasm and motivation inspired others who listened to him with respect.

Scott is now applying for a course as a Teaching Assistant, which will lead to employment by Nottinghamshire Fire and Rescue Service for a minimum of 12 months.

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Educational Achiever of the Year

The Educational Achiever of the Year award, sponsored by Experian, recognises young people who have overcome barriers, developed new skills and improved their education prospects.

Winner: Baseer Khan

Preoccupied with huge anxieties, and with no previous education, Baseer found school extremely difficult. Baseer joined The Prince’s Trust xl programme (now known as Achieve) and found his motivation. He showed willingness to learn and the group helped him overcome his barriers to social and academic progress. Baseer’s natural leadership skills became apparent and he organised and ran the group’s activities.

Now he routinely completes his work in class and helps his peers. Baseer is currently working towards his GCSE exams and will go on to college to study carpentry or motor mechanics.

Baseer loves cricket and has become captain of the school team.

Finalist: James Howland

Living with the effects of an extremely rare syndrome, James has spent much of his young life undergoing medical treatment. He has very little vision, able only to perceive light and dark and to see shapes and bright colours up to a metre away. His fingers, toes and teeth are also affected.

James was unsure about The Prince’s Trust xl (now known as Achieve) programme, fearing that other young people would not understand or support him. He was routinely reluctant to express his ideas in school and had little confidence in his own ability.

Despite his doubts, James accepted every challenge the programme presented and proved his courage to everyone around him. He was able to help them understand his needs and they readily supported him, knowing he would tackle anything within his capabilities.

James’s new-found confidence has inspired his to plan for his future which he never thought possible before he became involved with The Trust.

Finalist: Joe Hinsley

A wheelchair user living with the effects of spina bifida and hydrocephalus and associated surgical treatment, Joe found it very challenging to keep up with schoolwork. He was demotivated and lacked confidence, constantly having to catch up when he returned from unavoidable absences. 

Irregular attendance added to his physical difficulties in joining in with his peers, resulting in limited social relationships. New situations were stressful and could cause Joe to become highly emotional.  

Joe was apprehensive embarking on The Prince’s Trust xl (now known as Achieve) programme, worried that he would not fit in and that his peers would not support him. But from the start, he found the course so motivating that he set himself ambitious targets and monitored his progress to make sure he was on track to achieve.

Joe embraced every challenge and his confidence soared. His leadership skills engaged his peers who supported him in every task.

Now his self-belief enables him to take on any challenge.

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