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Jack Petchey Foundation Achievement and Leadership Awards

Youngsters from Chafford HundredMore than 200 award winners from Secondary Schools, Palmer’s College, the Youth Service and Youth Groups in Thurrock attended a special ceremony at The Civic Hall to celebrate the annual Jack Petchey Foundation Achievement and Leadership awards worth £65,000 to the borough.

The event was compered by BBC Radio presenter Dave Monk, with special guest Lloyd Scott -known as the walking Deep Sea Diver, following his charity marathons dressed in a diving suit.

In total there were more than 600 young people together with friends, families, and staff packed into the hall for the only event which unites these organisations in the borough which was organised by Keith Grantham from Thurrock Council.

The Achievement award winners each received a medallion to go with their framed certificate and cheque for £200 for the school.

There was also recognition for youth leaders who have demonstrated, in an outstanding way, an ability to encourage and motivate young people.

The quartet of winners from PalmerÂ’s College.The Leader Award winners received a gilt medallion, certificate and cheque for £1,000 to be spent on their school or community project.

Prize money from the Foundation has mostly been spent on extra resources and equipment for various departments in the schools and community projects.

The Jack Petchey Foundation, founded in 1999 and based in Ilford, aims to help develop the potential within young people aged 11-25 in East London and West Essex.

The Foundation is eager to help youngsters take advantage of opportunities and to play their part in society. So far £10 million has been donated to a wide range of schools and organisations.

Nominations for the monthly awards are made by teachers, parents, governing bodies or young people themselves. Each individual school sets up the selection process best suited to its culture and the money must be spent on the school or community project.

The event also featured entertainment by Thurrock Youth Jazz Orchestra, Nathaniel Bareham, Thurrock Young Musician of the year, from William Edwards School, Alice Reader, Thurrock Teen Idol winner, from St Clere’s School, and rock group Highly Strung consisting of Grant McNeill, Nathan Church, Leanne and Reece Hall, all from Gable Hall School.

“This has been a fantastic night,” Steve Beynon, Corporate Director of Education told the audience. “The talent on display here from both award winners and performers is outstanding. Roughly one quarter of the population of Thurrock is aged between 0-18 years old. I have spent the last six months listening to what many of them have to say and its good stuff.

“They know better than us how to get messages across and we want our young people to have a voice and be proud of their achievements. We believe in you and you have certainly been heard tonight.”

The Foundation is inviting more schools and youth organisations to get in touch. £1.2 million has been allocated to the scheme for 2004/5. For further details go to the website


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