A TEENAGER who has been volunteering since the age of six was named the winner of the Young Achiever category.
Ryan Robinson, 14, said he was delighted to receive the award, which he was given in recognition of his eight years volunteering for St John Ambulance.
The teenager, who attends Aldworth School, said: “I have no idea who nominated me, and it was a surprise to win.
“I was nervous before coming here but it has been a really good night. There are so many people who deserve to win.”
His mum, Karen, from South Ham, Basingstoke, said she is incredibly proud of her son.
She said: “He wouldn’t volunteer unless he enjoyed it, and he has had some fantastic support from other volunteers along the way. He does a great job, and I really couldn’t be prouder of him.”
As reported in The Gazette, Ryan was recently among more than 80 young people who attended the St John Ambulance Young Achievers’ Reception at Buckingham Palace.
Having learned first aid with the charity, Ryan now volunteers weekly at his local Badger Unit in Basingstoke, mentoring other young children and passing on his life-saving knowledge.
Young ice skater Danielle Harrison was another finalist. In 2013, she became the youngest member, by three years, of the National Ice Skating Association’s performance squad.
Danielle is ranked as the British number one in the junior ladies rankings and recently joined Torvill and Deane to perform in Sarajevo.
Elsa Dobell, 21, was the other finalist. Elsa, who has learning difficulties, helps to run a youth club and spends her own wages on food and events for the group.
Mark Jones, editor of Gazette Newspapers, which sponsored the category with The Breeze, said the standard of entries for the category was “very high”.
He said: “While there were many strong entries, Ryan stood out from the pack and was a worthy winner.”