Nineteen inspirational young people. Seven glittering award categories. One iconic venue.

Ryan Morris (Young Achiever Award), Marianne Blaney (Enterprise Award ), Ryan Lennon (Rising Star Award), Mark Dougan (Director of Prince’s Trust), John Devlin (Young Ambassador Award), Shannon Connor (Education Award), Gearoidin Barr (Break Through Award )and Aimee Kelly from Sacred Heart College (Community Impact Award). Photo by Kelvin Boyes / Press Eye.
Ryan Morris (Young Achiever Award), Marianne Blaney (Enterprise Award ), Ryan Lennon (Rising Star Award), Mark Dougan (Director of Prince’s Trust), John Devlin (Young Ambassador Award), Shannon Connor (Education Award), Gearoidin Barr (Break Through Award )and Aimee Kelly from Sacred Heart College (Community Impact Award).
Photo by Kelvin Boyes / Press Eye.

Celebrate Success comes to town

The Prince’s Trust and TK Maxx & Homesense Celebrate Success Awards, now in their 13th year, recognise disadvantaged young people who have overcome issues such as abuse, drug addiction, homelessness, depression and unemployment.

On Tuesday 1st November, friends, family and supporters came together in the show-stopping Titanic Belfast venue situated in the heart of Belfast’s Titanic Quarter to celebrate the most inspiring young people from Northern Ireland.

As 450 guests filed in, laughter broke into whispers as people took their seats to watch the live stream of the action on the iconic Titanic staircase stage unfold. The anticipation grew and the lights dimmed as Prince’s Trust Ambassadors and hosts for the evening, Pete Snodden and Kirstie McMurray of Cool FM & Downtown Radio were welcomed to the stage.

Celebrities in attendance included Ian Beattie from the Game of Thrones, Patrick Buchanan from Hollyoaks, Michael O’Neill, NI Football Manager, Adam Keefe, Captain of the Belfast Giants and the glamorous Alison Clarke from ACA Modelling Agency. Guests were treated to performances by Comedian and Actor, Shane Todd, Human Beatboxer, Cull and Dance Group, Ajendance.

Mark Dougan, Prince’s Trust Northern Ireland Director said:

“What an amazing night! Celebrate Success brings our work to life in incredible ways and we are indebted to our finalists for sharing their stories. I’d also like to recognise the exceptional people – their champions – who helped them on their journey.”

“None of this would be possible without our generous sponsors, particularly TK Maxx & Homesense, who make Celebrate Success possible.”

Winner Ryan Morris 23, from Dunmurry, drank, took drugs and had his home raided by the police. A friend signposted him to Get Started with Outdoor Activities at Colin Glen, a programme from The Prince’s Trust that builds confidence in disadvantaged young people. He loved the experience and went on to join Team, a 12-week Prince’s Trust programme that enhances the employability prospects of unemployed young people.

Shortly after Team, Ryan lost another family member to suicide, and was seriously injured in a vicious gang attack that left his friend dead. Mentally broken, Ryan went to his only refuge – The Prince’s Trust Team. He says the Team programme was the only thing that kept him going.

He became one of The Trust’s most inspirational Young Ambassadors, retelling his story to young people, staff and supporters and sharing how The Prince’s Trust helped heal his life. Ryan’s family are no longer ashamed of Ryan. They are proud; proud of the person he has become, and proud of who he wants to be.

Ryan said:

“I couldn’t be happier with how my life is at this moment. Life is precious and I hope to continue building my relationship with The Prince’s Trust, be actively involved as much as I can, and hope to inspire as many young people as possible.” 

Award sponsors, TK Maxx have been a partner of The Prince’s Trust since 2013 and has become one of the Trust’s largest delivery partners of the Get into Retail programme.  This two to six week course develops young people’s skills in the retail sector and supports them into positive outcomes in retail.  Since the partnership began 67% of young people who have taken the course went on to full time employment.

In 2016 HomeSense, the sister company of TK Maxx, appointed The Prince’s Trust as their national charity partner. HomeSense are supporting The Prince’s Trust Achieve programme which helps vulnerable young people achieve in their local communities. Store associates and customers from across HomeSense’s 44 UK stores are raising funds for the Trust through a number of in-store campaigns.

Earlier this year, HomeSense launched the partnership by supporting the #partofPT campaign which saw The Trust touring the UK to celebrate its 40th anniversary with some of the hundreds of thousands of people whose lives have been touched by its work.

TK Maxx and HomeSense are proud to have helped 650 young people through the Get into Retail programme.

Youth charity The Prince’s Trust gives disadvantaged young people the skills and confidence to find a job.  Three in four young people helped by The Prince’s Trust move into work, training or education.

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