Ashley Pyke, aged 17 from Newport, has been named The Co-operative StreetGames Young Volunteer of the Year 2010. The announcement was made at a special youth conference being held by The Co-operative StreetGames Young Volunteers programme as part of National Volunteers Week.
Online PR News – 25-June-2010 – – Ashley Pyke, aged 17 from Newport, has been named The Co-operative StreetGames Young Volunteer of the Year 2010. The announcement was made at a special youth conference being held by The Co-operative StreetGames Young Volunteers programme as part of National Volunteers Week.
The awards, now in their second year, recognise the outstanding work being carried out by young people involved in The Co-operative StreetGames Young Volunteers initiative. The programme, which operates throughout Wales and England, was established by The Co-operative and youth sports development charity StreetGames, to help young people from disadvantaged areas gain sports coaching and community leadership skills by volunteering at their local neighbourhood sports project.
The 7 finalists from England & Wales shortlisted for the awards were judged on factors including skills and qualifications gained, general attitude, impact on other young people and their community, as well as their personal journey and achievements.
Ashley, aged 17, volunteers at the Newport Positive Futures project which delivers sport to young people throughout Newport.
Despite having a turbulent family history and arriving in Duffryn without knowing anyone, Ashley has become an integral figure in the community. As well as leading sports session for local young people, Ashley has also mentored other volunteers experiencing troubles, is involved with attracting funding to the project and has pushed himself to gain qualifications which have meant that the project has been able to extend the activities it offers. He has also gone on to use his new found skills and confidence to gain employment with a local ‘Soccer Tots’ programme for under six year olds.
Michael Fairclough, Head of Communities and Campaigns at The Co-operative Group remarked: “Ashley has shown real progress since joining the programme and has made a huge impact to the project. Ashley is a living, breathing example of what talented young people can achieve when afforded the opportunity. The skills and qualifications he has gained show his tenacity and dedication to lead from the front.”
Ashley was presented with his award by former 800m Commonwealth Champion and Olympic athlete Diane Modahl, in front of around 80 young people from across England and Wales who attended the conference.
The young delegates had all been taking part in a number of youth led workshops, debating issues surrounding the positive role young people can play in their communities, on how they can develop sports provision and on the future of youth volunteering in the UK. A number of delegates also took part in ‘Dragon’s Den’ style pitches for a chance to obtain funding from UnLtd Sport Relief for their projects.
Ashley said: “I was absolutely speechless when they announced my name as the winner - I was so shocked! In volunteering I have the opportunity to do something I love day in, day out. To be given an award for that makes me very lucky indeed. I have to say a big thank you to all the staff at Newport Positive Futures who have helped me along the way and given me the chance to play such an important role in others lives. Hopefully I can give the support to other young people that they have shown me.”
Jane Ashworth, Chief Executive of StreetGames, commented: “Through our young volunteers programme we aim to give young people the opportunity to develop new skills, gain qualifications and become active leaders in their communities. Ashley is a shining example to other young people and a great ambassador for the programme. He has helped so many people in his community. Congratulations to him and of course to all our other young volunteers who are changing lives in neighbourhoods across England & Wales.”
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Notes to editors:
About Co-operative StreetGames Young Volunteers
• The Co-operative StreetGames Young Volunteers scheme is now in its third year. A range of case studies are available.
• The Co-operative are providing five years support to The Co-operative StreetGames Young Volunteers programme totalling over £1m, of which nearly all has been matched funded by V, the youth volunteering charity.
• Launched in 2007, StreetGames is the only national charity dedicated to developing sport in disadvantaged communities and making sport accessible to all young people regardless of their income and social circumstances. This is achieved by supporting and establishing local projects around the UK that deliver doorstep sport, i.e. positive activities provided to young people when they want it, where they want it and how they want it.
• StreetGames is funded primarily by: Sport England, V and the Co-operative Group.
About The Co-operative
• The Co-operative Group stands apart from other major retailers in the UK as a business, which is owned, not by a small group of shareholders, but by more than five million consumers. With core interests in food, financial services, travel, pharmacy, funerals and farms, it has an annual turnover of £14 billion, employs 123,000 staff and operates over 5,000 retail trading outlets handling more than 20 million weekly transactions.
• Following the acquisition of the Somerfield supermarket chain in March 2009, The Co-operative Food is the fifth largest food retailer. The Co-operative Financial Services is one of the largest and most diversified financial mutual businesses, operating The Co-operative Bank, The Co-operative Insurance and Britannia.
• The Co-operative is the UK’s number one provider of funeral services, the third largest retail pharmacy chain, a leading travel retailer, supplying the travel needs of more than three million people annually, and is the UK’s largest farmer.
• Among its other businesses are The Co-operative Motor Group, The Co-operative Electrical Shop and The Co-operative Legal Services.
• As well as The Co-operative StreetGames Young Volunteers scheme The Co-operative Group is also involved in other worthwhile causes such as Charity Mobile Phone recycling as well as increasing awareness on facts about Climate Change.