Wandsworth Young Person Of The Year Revealed

17 Year Old Who Grew Up In Care Plans Career in Family Law

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A 17-year-old girl who is planning to use her experience growing up in care to pursue a career in family law, has been named the winner of the Wandsworth Young Person of the Year 2012.

Sharnough Dauley-Hill, who has spent much of her young life in Wandsworth, claimed the title at the annual award ceremony in the Town Hall on Tuesday May 8.

The council-run event, now in its 20th year, acknowledged some of the brightest and best young people in the borough for their achievements, courage, generous attitude or ability to overcome difficult personal circumstances.

Sharnough, who wants to use her childhood experiences of going through the legal system to benefit others, was one of 120 young people chosen from more than 300 candidates to be part of the Pathways to Law programme. This saw her gain a work experience placement at top ten legal practice, Hogan Lovells International, after impressing selectors with her outstanding GCSE results and personal statement.

Sharnough was Head Girl of Year 11 at Graveney School in Tooting, was voted Student of the Year by her peers and managed to make time to help organise her year's prom. As well as playing the guitar in a five piece female band and taking part in charity challenges, Sharnough teaches volleyball to Years 7 to 9 after school and will be one of the younger volunteers for the London Olympics - where she will be a ball girl on the volley ball courts.

Last summer, Sharnough was presented with a National Citizen Certificate by Prime Minister, David Cameron.

Sharnough said: "Being nominated for Wandsworth Young Person of the Year was already an exciting opportunity and I am thankful to my nominator, Bill Marney, for acknowledging my potential.

"I was awe-stricken when my name was the last one to be called. I was overwhelmed and could not stop smiling. It was a fantastic evening and I am thankful to everyone who made an effort to make tonight special.

"I am extremely thankful for my parents for nurturing and shaping me into the girl I am."

Councillor Angela Graham, Chairman of the Wandsworth Young Person of the Year and Junior Citizens schemes, praised all of the young people recognised on the night.

She said: "It never ceases to amaze me that a group of people so young can be so inspirational.

"Many of those who walked away with an award have been faced with great challenges or personal problems in their short lives - but they have found the strength to overcome them and to shine.

"All of these young people have very bright futures and I hope that this recognition will encourage them to strive to be even greater."

As well as being named Young Person of the Year, Sharnough won £500.

Nominations for next year's award will open at the end of 2012 and anyone interested should check the council website at that time for news.

Find out more about what's on offer to young people in the borough by visiting www.wandsworth.gov.uk/youth.

May 21, 2012