Golden boy Matt Wylie launches Sunderland’s Young Achievers awards

Olympic gold medal winner Matt Wylie with Sunderland councillor Louise Farthing at the launch of the 2017 Sunderland  Achievers awards.

Olympic gold medal winner Matt Wylie with Sunderland councillor Louise Farthing at the launch of the 2017 Sunderland Achievers awards.

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One of Wearside’s most inspirational people has helped launch the city’s search for special youngsters.

Paralympic gold medalist, Matt Wylie, went along to support the launch of Sunderland’s 2017 Young Achievers’ Awards.

Being nominated is an honour in itself

Matt Wylie

The annual event is a celebration of the city’s most inspiring, aspirational, motivated and creative young people has begun.

Matt - who was last year’s winner in the 14-20-year-olds category and overall winner of the Andy Neal prize named after founder of the awards - joined Portfolio Holder for Children’s Services, Coun Louise Farthing at Washington Leisure Centre to launch this year’s awards.

A hero in Rio, Matt, who is a member of the City of Sunderland Swim Club, said: “I was extremely proud to receive the Andy Neal award last year, and of all the recognition I’ve received through the Sunderland Young Achievers’ Awards.

“It’s great for all young people to know that our efforts are being appreciated, and being nominated is an honour in itself.”

Coun Farthing, said: “I am honoured to help launch nominations for Young Achievers 2017, and invite people to put forward the names of young people they’d like to receive recognition for their massive, individual contribution to life in our city.

“I’m delighted we’re being joined by Matt, who has overcome such physical. personal challenges to achieve so much in his studies and chosen sport. We can all be proud of Matt, and of all the young people in our city to which these awards are dedicated.

“I think it is more important than ever that we recognise the talent and commitment that exists within our young people, and I believe that these awards are a great incentive for all our young people to strive to be the best that they can be in whatever they do.”

all the recognition I’ve received through the Sunderland Young Achievers’ Awards.

The Young Achievers’ Awards are organised by Sunderland City Council with the support and sponsorship of the local business and community sector.

This year’s sponsors include Gentoo, University of Sunderland Students Union, Sunderland Governors Association, Nissan, Sunderland Carers Centre, Sun-FM and SAFC Foundation of Light. The awards are open to anyone living in Sunderland aged between eight and 20-years-ol and celebrate the achievements, bravery, talent and positive contribution they have made to the lives of their families, communities and city.

The categories are music and the performing arts, personal achievement, academic achievement, young carer, young volunteer, sport, school council, and anti-bullying, young apprentice and service to the community.

All winners and runners-up will then be invited to attend the awards presentation and annual celebratory event being staged at the Stadium of Light on Thursday, March 23.

Nominations can be made online on http://www.sun-fm.com/ya17.php or by contacting Jane Wheeler, Participation and Engagement Lead, at jane.wheeler@sunderland.gov.uk or 561 7430.