Jake up for Guide Dogs’ award

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A TEENAGER has been shortlisted for an award for speaking for guide dogs.

Jake Burlace, from Sunderland, is competing for the Young Person’s Achievement in this year’s Specsavers Guide Dog of the Year Awards.

The 17-year-old will find out whether or not he has won at a ceremony in London, on Thursday.

Jake started volunteering for Guide Dogs less than a year ago.

As speaker co-ordinator he arranges engagements for volunteer speakers in the area.

Thanks to him, they are able to go out into the community and spread the word about Guide Dogs.

He also visits the Guide Dogs mobility team office in Newcastle every Wednesday afternoon to help out, including dog grooming and admin.

Jake said: “I’ve always been interested in Guide Dogs and the work they do to help people with sight loss.

“The branch and the mobility team have been really welcoming and it’s been a great experience for me to get involved in what they do.”

Richard Leaman, Guide Dogs’ chief executive, said: “Before starting with Guide Dogs, Jake researched the organisation and knew a great deal about our strategy to get more blind and partially sighted people out and about.

“He is a hard-working and thoroughly pleasant young man who deserves recognition for his fantastic contribution to Guide Dogs.”