Nominations encouraged to enter the best of Felixstowe's youngsters for Suffolk HOPE Awards

By Derek Davis

15th Mar 2021 | Local News

Felixstowe schools are today being encouraged to nominate youngsters for the new Suffolk HOPE Awards which are being launched by Suffolk Constabulary, in partnership with Suffolk County Council.

Launched off the back of National Hate Crime Awareness Week in October last year, the aim of the Hope Awards is to recognise and celebrate the positive contributions that young people make within the county.

The pandemic has affected the whole community, however we are particularly aware of the impact on young people and their positive response to the challenges they have faced during the last year.

Secondary schools and education providers for 16 to 18 year olds, along with the public, are being invited to nominate a worthy young person or group who they think have been involved in inspiring projects or activities for themselves and those around them. Nominations are welcome for any young person aged between 11 and 18 years-old, who has gone above and beyond and continued to demonstrate resilience, determination and teamworking, despite the unprecedented circumstances of 2020/2021.

The awards will have a celebration event prior to the end of the academic year 2021 where the achievements of the award winners will be formally recognised. Nominations are now open and will close on Friday 7 May 2021.

The categories are as follows:

Diversity – Individuals or groups who have promoted diversity, taken a stand to prevent/stop discrimination, have undertaken activity to help challenge a negative mindset and affected positive change.

Respect and Kindness – Kindness is often an underestimated attribute; this category aims to recognise actions (both large and small) which demonstrate compassion and an understanding of another's struggles.

Teamwork – Teamwork is a skill that is carried forward from school to higher education, work and adulthood. By working as a team, the category aims to acknowledge the benefits of sharing ideas and experiences and finding a common approach to solve an issue.

Determination – This category aims to celebrate and recognise the determination and resilience of our young people and reward their positive attitude to finding solutions or helping each other and their community.

As part of the awards process, there will also be an overall 'HOPE Award', this will be awarded to a school for their performance and participation in the awards.

Once the nominations have been submitted, each school will select who they wish to put forward in each category. These will then be considered by a county wide judging panel, consisting of representatives from each organisation involved. Overall winners will be selected in each of the four categories and one overall HOPE winner.

In June, the overall winners will be announced and recognised at an awards event.

For the full criteria and to submit an entry via the online application form, visit: [L][L+][.L

Alternatively, a form can be requested by emailing [email protected].

Inspector Becky Kidd-Stanton from Suffolk Constabulary said: "The impact of individual acts of kindness, demonstrating respect for others and working as part of a team, should not be under estimated. These attributes are important within schools and the wider community.

"Alongside academic progress, it is important to recognise these skills and attributes that young people often have in abundance. We would like to encourage pupils, teachers and community members to nominate individuals or groups who they would like to see recognised for their efforts through the Suffolk HOPE awards.

"We would like to thank Suffolk County Council, ITFC and Suffolk FA for their enthusiasm and support.

"This exciting new initiative will provide a welcome opportunity to shine a light on some of our inspirational young people at the end of a very difficult academic year. We look forward to receiving your nominations."

Councillor Paul West, Suffolk County Council's Cabinet Member for Communities, said: "This past year has been incredibly tough on our communities but there has also been a real sense of coming together and taking care of each other.

"We have seen some truly encouraging demonstrations of resilience, compassion and respect from our young people. It gives me great pride to recognise these inspirational individuals and the contribution they are making to tackling Hate Crime within our communities."


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