Leyland’s best neighbour and young community champion have been recognised at their very own ‘Oscars’ ceremony.
More than 300 delegates attended the Progress Housing Group’s Tenant Conference at the Blackpool Hilton Hotel, which brought together tenants, residents, staff, partner agencies and voluntary organisations from across Lancashire.
The conference took its own take on the Oscars and was themed ‘Behind the Scenes’ to throw the spotlight on services that the housing group provides such as community involvement, tenancy enforcement, repairs and estate management.
And two Leyland tenants came out on top, with a host of residents from the town also being named as finalists.
The Good Neighbour award is given to a resident who goes the extra mile to look after their neighbours, and Elizabeth ‘Betty’ Papadopoullos won the award because since moving to Jubilee Court, she has continually supported all of the residents living at the scheme.
Her nomination said: “If anyone has a problem or needs anything fixing they will call on Betty for help or advice.
“She is heavily involved in numerous scheme activities from the film club and bingo to barbecues, and is always happy to lend a hand.”
Josh Evenson was presented with the Young Community Champion award for his involvement with the Base community centre in Leyland, which is awarded to a resident aged under 25 who has made a positive difference to their local community.
His nomination said: “Josh volunteers much of his time at The Base community centre in Leyland, helping out with the youth club and volunteering to show other young people the way forward by acting as a positive role model.
“Josh has gained the respect not only from adults that he works alongside, but of his peers too.”
Susan Bryce from Farington and The Base’s Karen Beech were finalists for the Resident Involvement Champion award, which recognises residents who give up their own time to help Progress improve its homes, communities and services.
Karen’s nomination said: “Karen has been involved in the work on Broadfield estate for a number of years now, working continually to support and promote resident involvement activities within the area.
“Karen has re-formed the Broadfield Community Association - acting as Chair, she has the needs of the community at the forefront of all the work she does in this role.”
Two more Leyland residents came runner-up in the Good Neighbour award - Dobbie Shepherd and Joan Bell.
Dobbie was recognised for being “an extremely kind and helpful person who is always ready to help in any situation, who is a real treasure to the community.”
Joan’s nomination said: “Joan is a fantastic support system to her surrounding neighbours. She regularly visits and looks after a neighbour who is blind.
“Recently another neighbour went into hospital and Joan took it upon herself to feed and look after the neighbour’s pets.
“Joan is a well-known and respected member of her community.”