Teenager honoured at Islington’s Youth Achievement Awards juggled volunteer work with caring for family and comedy career

A teenager has been named volunteer of the year for helping to build a community centre’s pond – managing to find the time between caring for his siblings and sick parent while also pursuing a dream of comedy stardom.

Adam Rachid, 18, was recognised for his efforts at Islington’s Youth Achievement Awards at Islington Assembly Hall in Upper Street, Islington, celebrating the accomplishments of the borough’s community-spirited young people.

Despite already having plenty on his plate, as a budding comic and part-time carer for three younger siblings and his parent, the hard-working teen volunteered on a project to construct the water feature at Hilldrop Community Centre in Community Lane, off Hilldrop Road, Holloway.

And as if that was not enough, he is now mentoring at The Zone Youth Project based at the same centre.

Cllr Richard Watts, Islington Council’s executive member for children and families, said: “These awards are a great opportunity to celebrate all the incredible work that our young people do, despite many of them dealing with challenging circumstances in their lives. I think everyone who attended the awards felt inspired by the stories they heard.”

Other hard-working youngsters whose sterling efforts were recognised in front of about 150 guests included Dene Figueira De Sousa.

The 16-year-old is a member of The Zone Youth Project Committee and is busy setting up a social enterprise cafe.

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Another gong, the youth project of the year award, went to the Pro Excellence Sports Academy (PESA), which was set up by four young people to run football coaching camps.

PESA chief executive Caric James, 19, said: “My biggest reward is seeing young people develop in their attitudes. You can achieve any goals you set for yourself if you focus, work hard and have the right support network around you.”