Contest recognises a positive side to youth

PUBLISHED: 13:31 22 June 2006 | UPDATED: 14:44 12 May 2010

The contest's logo

The contest's logo

A CONTEST aimed at showing the positive side of young people has been widened. This year organiser Tony Gearing will be running separate contests in both North Herts and East Herts. Mr Gearing said: Everywhere you look nowadays young people are being con

A CONTEST aimed at showing the positive side of young people has been widened.

This year organiser Tony Gearing will be running separate contests in both North Herts and East Herts.

Mr Gearing said: "Everywhere you look nowadays young people are being condemned. It's almost as though every one of them is a binge-drinking, drug-taking violent hoody."

But the description was proved wrong last year when Mr Gearing ran the Royston Young Person of the Year contest.

Then a dozen or so youngsters proved that they were playing a vital role in the community - and Mr Gearing hopes that this year, too, he will be able to demonstrate the positive side of young people.

He has widened the contest to include one for North Herts and one for East Herts.

Mr Gearing said that young people who are playing a positive role seem to "live in the shadow of the well-publicised anti-social minority."

In North Herts, Royston-based property company St John Spencer Estates and Developments will be the leading sponsor along with Johnson Matthey, accountants Hardcastle Burton, of Royston, and Altro of Letchworth.

The giant company GlaxoSmithKline and BAA Stansted will sponsor the contest in East Herts.

Cllr Clare Short, chairman of North Herts District Council, described the contest as a "brilliant initiative".

She said: "Too often you only hear negatives about what young people are up to. This contest does the opposite and recognises the positive contribution of young people."

The district council, too, is playing a role in sponsoring the contest in North Herts.

Cllr Allen Burton, chairman of East Herts District Council, said: "This contest is a valuable opportunity to highlight the contribution of young people."

Oliver Heald, the MP for North East Herts, said: "The contest provides communities with a good opportunity to applaud the efforts of some remarkable young people in our midst."

The contests are open to young people aged from 10 to 25 years who live, work or study in the area.

The winner of the senior category will receive £1,000 - £500 for themselves and £500 for a supporting organisation.

The junior prize will be £500 and there will be two runners-up prizes of £250, all shared equally with not-for-profit organisations that work with young people.

To enter or make a nomination, visit the website at www.yopey.org or write to Young Person of the Year Award, PO Box 103, Hare Street, Ware SG9 0XD.


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