Award show to honour inspiring young Scots

Young Scots who have succeeded against the odds will be honoured at The Prince’s Trust Scotland Celebrate Success awards this week.

Before finding the Princes Trust, Tommy Read had developed violent tendencies towards nearly everyone in his life
Before finding the Princes Trust, Tommy Read had developed violent tendencies towards nearly everyone in his life

The awards take place on the November 4 at The Assembly Rooms, Edinburgh and will be attended by celebrity guests Sanjeev Kohli, Grado, Blythe Duffand and Miss Scotland Mhairi Fergusson.

The finalists from across Scotland have been recognised for their bravery and determination in overcoming challenges such as anxiety, depression, drug abuse and homelessness to achieve brighter futures for themselves.

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Awards including the KMPG Rising Star Award, HSBC Breakthrough Award, the Royal Bank of Scotland Enterprise Award and the Samsung Young Achiever of the Year Award will be handed out on the day.

Amy Wilson. Picture: Sandy Young

Alongside a number of inspiring individuals, Amy Wilson and Tommy Read, are both nominated for an award.

Amy Wilson, who is nominated for the Young Ambassador of the Year award, slept up to 20 hours a day to escape the constant anxiety she felt before finding the Prince’s Trust. Since experiencing three separate assaults on the bus home from school, she left the house only for therapy appointments.

Amy felt she was getting nowhere and believed her life was pointless and seriously considered taking her own life more than once.

At this point, she received a lifeline – her careers advisor told her about the Get into Beauty programme which led to Amy moving on to study HNC at college. She dreams of owning her own business one day. After impressing everyone she has come across with her enthusiasm and passion, along with her willingness to continually help and support others, Amy became a Prince’s Trust Young Ambassador in February 2015.

In this role, she represented The Trust at a number of high profile events, including a VIP reception for The Duke of Rothesay at Holyrood Palace.

“I can’t quite believe that I’m now doing things such as speaking to groups of more than 1000 people or appearing on TV to promote the message of the Trust” she explains.

“However, it’s something I really want to do to repay the faith that has been put in me. When I finish my college course I’d like to join the Enterprise programme so that I can learn about starting my own business. Even just saying that seems unbelievable, but it is all down to The Prince’s Trust. My life really is transformed.”

Before finding the Prince’s Trust, Tommy Read had developed violent tendencies towards nearly everyone in his life.

Before his 16th birthday he had fallen in with the wrong crowd, was taking drugs, had been charged with offences such as assault, theft and breaking and entering, and had reaching breaking point with his family, with a secure unit the next step.

As a result of his behaviour, he was permanently excluded from school and although he then tried to pursue construction qualifications at college, that too ended with exclusion after a violent altercation with the course leader.

The events led to Tommy giving up on his future. The Prince’s Trust gave him the chance he desperately needed. He began to work on a range of skills, which improved his confidence, ability to deal with stress and manage his feelings.

“As a young offender I struggled to take any opportunities that came my way and went from one mess up to another. I can now see a way ahead that involves good things as opposed to drugs and prison” Tommy explained.