Awards celebrate achievements of remarkable youngsters from Radlett and St Albans
Two extraordinary teens have scored top accolades at an annual awards scheme which recognises the accomplishment of young people.the Hertfordshire Young People of the Year awards (YOPEYs).
Yoni Stone, 18, of Canons Close. Radlett, was runner up at the Herts Young People of the Year (YOPEY) awards ceremony while Annie-Marie Osbourne, 17, head girl at Townsend School, was named as runner up in the 10th anniversary YOPEY .
Yoni, a former pupil of Haberdashers’ Aske’s school, caught the attention of the judges after raising £50,000 for charity in two years.
The organised student, who now studies at Oxford University, chaired the charity committee and Jewish Society while also leaving time to score top grades in his A-Levels.
He led the school’s efforts in raising £41,000 to set up three pre-schools in Tanzania and was also involved in collecting laptops to help teach agricultural techniques in Africa.
Yoni organised the collection of spare pairs of glasses for the charity VisionAid to recycle and also arranged blood-giving sessions at his school.
He topped up the charitable total to more than £50,000 by organising quizzes, fetes, cake sales, a Jewish poem recital and taking part in a triathlon,
Justin Smith-Milne, principal of Smith-Milne & Co accountants which sponsors the awards with other companies, said: “We were struck by this finalist’s tremendous character and humility.
“He has not done this to seek attention for himself but because he has been asked to lead.
“And from his own privileged position he has realised there is much need in the world and that he should step up to help.”
Runner up Annie-Marie also caught the judges’ eyes in the 10th anniversary awards for her work with disabled people, her organised events that have raised thousands for charity, and her mentoring of younger pupils at the school.
Last year an adult friend of Annie-Marie, who was a haemophiliac, died aged 48. Annie gave a speech at St Albans Cathedral appealing for support for haemophiliacs.
She said: “I wanted to raise awareness of haemophilia as well as money to help the charity that supports haemophiliacs. It’s really nice to be recognised. It also gives me a chance to have my voice heard within school. That allows me to put forward ideas to organise more events to help charity.”