Leeds woman wins national award for youth work

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A WOMAN from Leeds has won a national award for her tireless work with young people.

Flavia Docherty, who is director of the Getaway Girls, has won the National Youth Agency Youth Work award for 2014.

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She will attend a parliamentary reception in London on November 5, to collect her award.

Flavia first became involved in youth work as a young person and began working as a volunteer at the age of 18.

Over the past 31 years she has worked in many settings in Leeds including youth projects, housing support, drugs projects, family support, schools and health promotion. In 1987 she was involved in setting up Getaway Girls, and in 2010 she came back as the director.

Leeds based project Getaway Girls supports young women facing a variety of issues including young mums and pregnant young women, refugees, asylum seekers, at risk of sexual exploitation and young women in care. Getaway Girls tailors its offer to the young women depending on their needs.

Flavia said: “I’m absolutely delighted that I’ve won the Youth Worker Award. I feel passionate about youth work and the difference it can make to young people’s lives.

“I’ve worked with many fantastic young people throughout the last 31 years and some of these young people are now fantastic youth workers. I love working as a youth worker and I’m proud to tell people I work for Getaway Girls, an amazing project that has been supporting young women in Leeds for over 25 years.”

The Youth Worker Awards recognise the individual impact of youth workers on young people and their communities. The awards seek to celebrate the local heroes who play a pivotal role in the development of our young people.

Flavia is a joint winner of the Youth Worker Award, sharing the top spot with Sharon Mccauley, a youth worker for Medway council. The judging panel also commended four other youth workers for their innovative approach to supporting young people in their local areas.

Fiona Blacke, National Youth Agency chief executive, said: “Congratulations to Flavia. Great youth workers are paramount to the success of youth work, without which many young people will not be given the opportunity to grow, develop and become active members of society.

“The Youth Worker Awards gives us a chance to celebrate and recognise the work of outstanding youth workers. The events of Youth Work Week enable us to demonstrate to policy makers and funders the true value of youth work as an essential form of provision in improving the lives of young people and their communities.”

The Youth Worker Award is part of Youth Work Week (November 3-9), an annual celebration of youth work organised by the National Youth Agency since 1993.

Flavia will be joining the NYA at a parliamentary reception on November 5 to collect her award.

Pictured top, Leeds actress Angela Griffin, patron of the Getaway Girls attending an event at the City Varieties, pictured with Stacey Alderson, left, Sarah Jolly, Becki Webster and Shanise James-Blair, plus Flavia Docherty, inset.

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