Number 11 Downing Street hosted a celebration event yesterday, organised by crime reduction charity Nacro, for the winners of the 2011 Philip Lawrence Awards. Young people from across England, Wales and Scotland travelled to meet Frances Lawrence and those involved in the awards to celebrate their success together. Other attendees included Rt Hon George Osborne MP, Rt Hon Michael Gove MP, Lord Howard of Lympne, Rt Hon David Blunkett MP and The Duchess of Kent.
The Philip Lawrence Awards Network, known as PLAnet, celebrates groups of young people who bring people together and make a real difference in their communities to counter crime and violence, bullying and racism, and challenge negative stereotypes. They exemplify Philip Lawrence’s belief that ‘Every child is capable of greatness’. These awards were managed by crime reduction charity, Nacro and funded by the Home Office.
The afternoon included a presentation of certificates, a showcase of videos from each project and speeches from Frances Lawrence, Nacro, the PLAnet Fellowship, Lord Howard and Michael Gove.
This year’s winners
- Just Ask Nottingham (Nottingham)
- Mentality (Bristol)
- Reclaim Our Name (Manchester)
- Vale Youth Speak Up (Barry, Wales)
- Voices Against Violence (Scotland)
- Young Citizens (Lewisham, London)
- Border Arts & Castlederg Youth Forum (Northern Ireland)
- Truth About Youth North East (Gateshead)
Speaking at the event Frances Lawrence, the Awards’ founder, said:
“The Philip Lawrence Awards began fifteen years ago and I am still inspired and humbled by the determination of our winners to confront cutting-edge problems in their communities and by their imaginative solutions. Whatever their personal history, these young people work together in a spirit of unity to truly transform other people’s lives. It’s been a significant day in the history of the Awards and I’m indebted to all those who made it possible.”
This event marks the end of the 2011-12 Awards. PLAnet is now taking the opportunity to pause and refresh its work going forward, working closely with the support of government and Nacro’s partners in the Youth Justice Board and NASUWT teaching union, for 2013.