BLACK Cats stars turned out to recognise the achievements of determined people across the city.
A ceremony at the Stadium of Light marked the Top Scorer Awards, which celebrate outstanding personal developments by those who have taken part in Foundation of Light programmes.
Many have made progress despite being faced with adversity.
The charity aims to use football to educate and inspire young people and families.
It worked with 42,000 people last year and presented 15 awards in a range of categories, including young role model, team player and inspiring young person, to worthy winners at the ceremony, attended by current SAFC players, and guests including Echo editor John Szymanski.
The Learning Together Award was won by the Patton family, from Easington Lane – mum Elizabeth, 45, dad John, 45, and sons Ewan, eight, Adam, seven, and five-year-old Ethan, who threw themselves into the project at Hetton Lyons Primary School.
Elizabeth said: “It was fantastic for the whole family, especially Ewan, who has chronic lung disease and is now much more active. We learned so much.”
from taking part and loved it.”