Kids chalk up kudos as role models

HUNDREDS of community members gathered in Lismore last night to acknowledge the feats of the younger generation at the Kids in Community Awards.

The function room of the Lismore WorkERs Club was full of anxious nominees, proud parents and respected community identities, including Bundjalung member Rhoda Roberts, who was a guest speaker at the event.

Among the 103 selfless youth who were nominated for going above and beyond to contribute to the community was Southern Cross K-12 student Gabrielle Alford, who received the young people supporting the community award.

After witnessing first hand the devastation and heartache caused by natural disasters in her native Fiji, Gabrielle began sending clothing and books to villages in need.

She is also an active Red Cross fundraiser and a Ballina SES volunteer.

Lauren Magri, from Ballina High School, received the against all odds award for her role as a voice for the younger community.

Lauren managed to draw on her own experiences with mental health and out-of-home care to inspire others to overcome their struggles.

Kids in Community president Des Kelly said they had more nominees this year than they'd ever had.

“Kids in Community is about raising awareness of the good things our kids are doing in the community,” he said. “It aims to raise the image of youth because a few years ago there was a perception that youth were out of control and out of touch.

“But there are kids going to theretirement homes on the weekend singing to the elderly, or coming out of a bad situation to help someone else who may not have had it as bad.”

Award winners

Young People Supporting Youth – General – Hayden Doolan

Young People Supporting Indigenous Youth – Shanise Close

Youth People Supporting Indigenous Youth – Groups – Sista's on About Resilience

Young People Supporting Diverse Youth – Division 1 – Ebony Hunt

Young People Supporting Diverse Youth – Division 2 – Phoebe Mitai

Young People Supporting Diverse Youth – Groups – Fistula Dinner Organising Committee

Young People Supporting the Community – Gabrielle Alford

Role Models – Aleesia Weaver

Role Models – Taylor Giltrap

Against All Odds – Lauren Magri

Against All Odds – Iain Turville

Individuals Supporting Youth – Grahame Marlowe

Groups Supporting Youth – Byron Youth House Volunteer Caretakers

Media Supporting Youth – Graham Broadhead

Success Martial Arts – Kids in Community Leadership Scholarship – Aiden Zelandonii

Encouragement Award – Ronan Cowie

Bronwyn Donaghy Memorial Award – Ruby Lewis

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