Lily transforms her life to become achiever of the year
A TALENT for poetry and a programme called Achieve have transformed the life of a teenager from Chipping Sodbury.
Lily Allan, 14, who goes to Brimsham Green School in Yate, was struggling with schoolwork and the loss of her grandad, who she said was her best friend.
But after taking part in the Prince’s Trust Achieve programme, which supports young people with their skills and self-esteem, and discovering a talent for poetry, which she started to write to find a way to express her emotions, her confidence and schoolwork have been transformed.
Lily has now been named the South West Educational Achiever of the Year award at The Prince’s Trust Awards, sponsored by digital media company Ascential.
The Achieve programme, which is run by the school, helps young people to develop their skills and self-esteem. It also helps them to re-engage with their education by providing a more flexible curriculum.
Lily said: “When I first started Achieve, it made me feel different to the other students. It showed me that everyone isn't the same and some people need more help with communicating, socialising and aren’t able to pick up on things as easily as others.
“I’m really proud of what I’ve achieved over the last year; I’m writing poetry, I feel better in myself and my confidence has been completely boosted. My grades have improved and I’ve even had one of my poems published – something I would never have imagined would happen.
“I know now I can do whatever I set my mind to and want to keep working hard at school to realise my dream of being a lawyer.”
Lily’s teacher Katherine Crocker nominated her for the award and was over the moon that she won.
Ms Crocker said: “Lily has achieved so much this year and we’re all so incredibly proud of her– well done Lily!”
Lily was presented with the regional award at the 1532 Performing Arts Theatre in Bristol on October 16.
At the ceremony she said: “It was really hard for me when my grandad passed away and I found it hard to concentrate at school.
"Writing poetry has really helped me and I was proud to see my poetry published. I am really pleased to have won the Educational Achiever Award.”
Bristol Grammar School headmaster Jaideep Barot, who presented Lily with her award, said: “Lily is a truly inspirational young woman who has overcome so much in her life already. She should be incredibly proud of her achievements – well done Lily!”
Picture of Lily Allan by Jess Greenwood Photography