More than 40 deserving young people, aged from 7 to 18 and from all areas of Surrey, were rewarded at at the weekend when the Surrey Young Superstars 2017 awards were presented by the Lord-Lieutenant of Surrey, Mr Michael More-Molyneux, during a ceremony at Guildford Harbour Hotel.

Launched in 2012 by Haslemere Travel, this year’s awards were once again organised by Haslemere Travel, in partnership with the county’s umbrella charity supporting the youth sector, Surrey Youth Focus. The fifth annual awards recognised outstanding young people in Surrey and were sponsored by NatWest, the Guildford Harbour Hotel and media partner Surrey Life magazine.

The event, which included a dance display by Guildford-based Harmony Dance and Drama, was attended by more than 130 guests, families and friends of the winners.

The 2017 award categories and their winners are:

Caring Superstar: 13 year-old Taylor Pearce

Fundraising Superstar (5-12 years): sisters Jess and Emily O’Brien, (aged 11 & 7)

Fundraising Superstar (13-19 years): twins Conor O’Shea & Marie Ramsay, aged 18

Joint Volunteering Superstars: Katie Waterman (aged 17) & George Warner (aged 16)

Community Superstar: Hamzah Rasheed (aged 17)

Courageous Superstar: Jasmine Dhaliwal (aged 17)

The overall winner of the top award, Superstar of the Year, was Jasmine Dhaliwal. There were also more than 35 young people who were Highly Commended.

The awards ceremony – which included a cream tea reception – was also kindly attended by the High Sheriff of Surrey, Mr Robert Napier CBE; Mrs Sally Marks, chairman of Surrey County Council, as well as all of the young award winners, their families and other nominees from all corners of Surrey.

Gemma Antrobus, owner of Haslemere Travel said: “Now in their fifth year, once again Surrey Young Superstars was a wonderful showcase for young people in Surrey – demonstrating their community spirit, unsung bravery and hard work. The judges were hugely impressed by the record number of entries received – especially in the Volunteering category – and the Haslemere Travel team wishes many congratulations to all of the very worthy winners.”

Surrey Youth Focus CEO, Cate Newnes-Smith said: “Surrey Youth Focus is proud to be involved again this year. We would like to thank our president, the Lord-Lieutenant, as well as Surrey’s voluntary youth organisations for their nominations; it is great to see the event grow year on year. We celebrate the fantastic achievements made by these young people and hope this event fuels their sense of empowerment to achieve their next goal.”

Peter Quilter, Director of Commercial Banking for NatWest in Surrey, said: “We are proud to have sponsored  Surrey Young Superstars and that it is such a wonderfully successful event.   The stories and achievements of all the young people who entered are inspirational and the winners truly stand out as shining examples for people of all ages in our Surrey community.”

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