image: Prof. Adam Beaumont of aql - main sponsors for Child Friendly Leeds

Winners announced at 2019 Child Friendly Leeds Awards

The Leeds City Varieties Music Hall was once again filled with representatives from across the city last month as the annual Child Friendly Leeds Awards took place.

The event celebrated the work that is taking place across the city of Leeds to make it the best place for children and young people to grow up in.

Eight deserving winners were revealed following a new record of nearly 600 nominations and 42 finalists – as well as a new ‘Special Recognition’ category. aql was proud to act as the main sponsor for the prestigious event, now for the second year, highlighting its commitment to improving the lives of young people and children across the city.

Company founder and CEO Professor Adam Beaumont said, ​‘Over the last decade, Leeds has brought mindfulness of our children and their present and futures into all of our endeavours. This has
transformed Leeds into a world class City which is achieving growth whilst maintaining its values of compassion and inclusivity. The CFL awards are a celebration and reminder of the great work which underpins our future. On behalf of aql, we’re proud to be the main sponsors for now and the foreseeable future. Moreover, personally, I’m proud to be an ambassador of Child Friendly Leeds and urge the private sector to get involved - their support is vital.’

The awards ceremony was organised by an exceptional group of 13 young people, The Dynamics, who both planned and executed the event as well as acting as hosts on the night.

The winners on the night were as follows:

Child of the Year (under 11)
Imogen Lawrence suffered a major loss in her family and went through counselling. Through her perseverance and resilience, the rest of her school have come to learn about dealing with difficult issues.

Young Person of the Year (11 – 21)
John Dunwell had a kidney transplant a number of years ago and is now a successful sportsman. He is instrumental in fundraising so other Leeds competitors can attend the National Transplant Games.

Youth Group of the Year
Out 2 18 and Transtastic Youth Group offer a safe place to meet for young people aged 13 - 25 years who identify as LGBT and are a lifeline for them.

Adult Making a Difference for Young People (adult 21 years and above)
Lisa James set up ZigZag (a support group for young people with autism and their families) and runs a community shop in Cookridge, which provides work experience and volunteering opportunities for people with autism.

Communities and Schools Working Together
‘The Hall Meets Hovingham’ Dementia Project involved pupils from Hovingham Primary visiting The Hall (a care home) with a view to raising awareness about dementia and contributing to the health and well-being of the older residents.

Inspiring Creativity through Arts and Culture
Life Experience are a social enterprise who support children, teenagers and vulnerable adults, by sharing real life experiences through the medium of poetry and drama, to encourage young people to avoid a life of crime and drug addiction.

Best Place in Leeds for Children and Young People
Herd Farm Residential and Activity Centre is a grade two listed converted barn transformed into a 50-bed residential and outdoor inclusive activity centre for children and young people set in 16 acres of tranquil countryside.

Overall Contribution to Making Leeds a Child Friendly City
LandSec (White Rose and Trinity) have provided work opportunities for young people, celebrated achievement by sponsoring Award ceremonies, run Christmas parties for foster and kinship families, and have provided family friendly toilets as well as a fantastic outdoor play space.

Special Recognition for Outstanding Contribution to the Child Friendly Leeds Awards
This award is to recognise the outstanding contribution The City Varieties Learning Team have made to Child Friendly Leeds. They do an incredible job year on year and work with a new group of young people every year and help them plan, organise and deliver this event that has become one of the highlights of the year.

400 people including Child Friendly Leeds supporters, leaders and city VIP’s will saw the winners announced on February 7th.

Find out more about Child Friendly Leeds here at

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