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Capt. Robert Nairac Awards

 



2017 Nairac Award Winnes


These annual Awards are named in memory of Captain Nairac from Standish, who joined the Second Battalion Grenadier Guards in January 1973. In 1977, at the age of 28 and during his second tour of duty in Northern Ireland, he disappeared. It later transpired that he had been abducted, tortured and murdered by Irish terrorists. In February 1979 it was announced that Her Majesty The Queen had approved the posthumous award of the George Cross, the highest honour for gallantry in peacetime, to Captain Nairac, whose body has not yet been found.

The Awards will be presented by Dame Janet Trotter, Her Majesty's Lord-Lieutenant for Gloucestershire and Patron of the Gloucestershire Branch of The Royal Society of St. George, during their 39th St. George’s Tide Service in Gloucester Cathedral on Monday, 24 April.

The winner of the Individual Nairac Award is Levi Major, an 18 year old from Tewkesbury. He lives with his father and younger sister. He is a young carer for his father who has battled chronic heroin and alcohol addiction, subsequent methadone dependency but is now clean and in recovery. Sadly, his father has also recently been diagnosed with cancer but has undergone treatment for this.

In his caring role this young man helps with the household tasks and looks after his younger sister when needed. He also provides emotional support to his father, keeping him company - sitting with him, talking and listening – and monitoring his wellbeing.

He has never given in to the stigma surrounding parental substance misuse and instead has always been vocal about how proud he is of his father’s strength. His father has always been honest with his children about his life and struggles. It is amazing this young man has the emotional intelligence to both understand the complexities of substance misuse and empathise with his father. Both he and his younger sister are remarkable young people and a credit to their family.

Gloucestershire Young Carers were proud to nominate him for the Nairac Award because he has shown great integrity and bravery in the face of challenging circumstances. He has worked hard to overcome social anxiety to get to a place where he is confident going out and meeting new people. His quiet confidence and strength of character has also been demonstrated in group work with other young carers.

Levi has chosen to give his Award cheque to Change Grow Live, a charity which champions people who have faced hardships such as addiction, homelessness and abuse, and supports them into recovery.

The Group Award has been won by Stroud High School. Girls and staff at the school were persuaded to give up social media for a week as part of a social experiment that was also raising funds for charity.

Sydney McAllister gave a presentation to fellow students about how social media had contributed to one girl’s anxiety levels. She urged others to join her in a social media detox for a week. The week aimed to inspire the girls to think about how they use social media and how it impacts on their lives, as well as raise funds for the charity Teens in Crisis. Around 400 people took part, including about 70 staff and parents.

This Award acknowledges the students’ concern for the wellbeing of not just one particular girl but all those who may be affected by social media anxiety. It also recognises their maturity in addressing the issue in a way which not only made everyone at their school think about the use of social media but also raised money for a worthy cause.

This is the first time a Nairac Award has been presented to a previous winner, which demonstrates that Stroud High School continues to nurture and produce special youngsters. The School first won the Award in 2006.

The Award cheque is being donated to Teens in Crisis, which seeks to improve, preserve and promote good mental health and well-being among young people and their families.

Sydney McAllister, Charlotte McNeil, Mia Denman and Jessica Hourston will receive the Award for Stroud High School.

In announcing the Award winners, Pat Ayres, Gloucestershire Branch Chairman, says "It will give me much pleasure to read the citations for these Awards, which are presented in the memory of a remarkable young soldier who made the ultimate sacrifice for Queen and Country. Most of all the Awards allow the Gloucestershire Branch of the Royal Society of St. George to recognise the work and achievements of just a few of the many wonderful young people we have in this county".

Notes:

The Individual Award Winner, Levi Major, was nominated by Gloucestershire Young Carers. Contact Jane Dyer, Fundraising and Marketing Manager, Tel: 0782 801 6857, email: jane@glosyoungcarers.org.uk

Stroud High School can be contacted through Sharon Smith, PA to the Headteacher, Tel: 01453 764441 email: SSmith@stroudhigh.gloucs.sch.uk


Branch website: www.rssggloucestershire.co.uk