The annual awards ceremony of Charlton Athletic Community Trust (CACT), which was sponsored by ITRM,

The annual awards ceremony of Charlton Athletic Community Trust (CACT), which was sponsored by ITRM, took place at the House of Lords on October 12th. This event was hosted by CACT Vice President, Lord Michael Grade of Yarmouth. The CACT Awards serve as a celebration of the organization’s extensive programs in South East London and Kent, as well as the accomplishments of its participants, staff, and partners from the past year.

Katy Turton, a client in the Early Intervention in Psychosis program for individuals who have experienced a psychotic episode, began the evening with a speech highlighting how CACT’s mental health support has positively impacted her personal journey. She then introduced Lord Grade, who announced that CACT’s social value within the local community amounted to £49.6 million. This indicates that for every £1 invested by CACT in its community, £9.52 of social value is generated.

The first award of the evening, Participant of the Year Under 18, sponsored by the University of Greenwich, was presented to Harry Steptoe, a member of CACT’s youth service. Harry has been actively involved with Young Greenwich for five years and contributes by teaching cooking and organizing sports activities. Harry expressed that Young Greenwich has played a crucial role in shaping his character, providing a sense of family and teaching him values like respect.

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The award’s significance was highlighted by Poppy Ring, Outreach Manager at the University of Greenwich, emphasizing the strong partnership between their institution and Charlton Athletic Community Trust, with Harry exemplifying their shared values.

Jeremy Bah, the winner of the Participant of the Year over 18 award, sponsored by Adams & Bowles Wealth Management Ltd, overcame significant challenges. He arrived in the UK from Sierra Leone at the age of 14 without a formal education but excelled in his GCSEs. Jeremy independently discovered CACT’s Post 16 Football & Education Academy and completed the program with a distinction grade. His exceptional attitude towards learning and resilience earned him this award.

The Partner of the Year award, sponsored by KW Developments, was given to B Young Stars, which collaborates with Young Greenwich to expand the youth service’s offerings to include personalized learning programs and sports activities. Abdi Mohamoud, CEO of B Young Stars, expressed his gratitude for the recognition and the unexpected journey that led him to the House of Lords.

The next award, the Program of the Year award sponsored by RSK, was presented to the Mental Health Provision. CACT offers a mental health program known as Early Intervention in Psychosis in partnership with organizations like Kent & Medway NHS & Social Care Partnership Trust, Shaw Trust, Porchlight, and Oxleas NHS Foundation Trust. This provision also includes programs for older adults with mental health diagnoses and residential trips for those in advanced stages of recovery.

Alan Ryder, RSK’s Managing Director, commended the resilience and determination of the award winners in the face of their challenges.

The Sir Maurice Hatter Outstanding Contribution to the Community award was given to Peter Murkin, who has been an integral part of the Extra Time Hub for over 55s and has been welcoming to new members while also serving as a host for Charlton Athletic for over 20 years.

The Outstanding Staff Contribution award, sponsored by former Charlton Athletic chairman Roger Alwen and his wife Heather, was presented to Billy Holdsworth, CACT’s Short Breaks Coordinator. Billy has worked across various Early Help and Prevention programs for four years and has made significant contributions to the Charlton Upbeats, Short Breaks disability provision, and outreach work.

If you wish to support CACT’s crucial work, you can consider becoming a Friend of CACT by setting up a regular donation today.

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