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National awards given to Waltham Forest’s young leaders

Young people from Waltham Forest have been singled out for their community achievements at a national awards event.

The Young Advisors charity – has officially recognised the achievements of the borough’s core youth engagement groups: the Waltham Forest Young Advisors & Youth Independent Advisory Group (YIAG). 

At the charity’s annual awards ceremony, two awards for partnership working were given to each of the groups as part of the Team Together award category – and 22-year-old Karishma Mohammed from Leyton was named Young Advisor of the Year.

Karishma is one of the founding members of Waltham Forest’s original Young Advisors group, which was set up in 2007 when she was 13 years old. She’s been with the group throughout its development and in that time has served as the borough’s youth mayoress and contributed to many discussions and decisions made by Council committees as well as helping shape a wide variety of projects for young people. 

Karishma, who has recently finished a four year law degree, said: “I was highly honoured and surprised to win the Young Advisor of the year award. It reinforced the aim of the Young Advisor charity that we can make an impact on young lives through our work with the community.”

“Although it was an individual award, my achievements would not have been possible without the great support from my team, working together to make sure our young voices are valued and respected.”

The Council’s Young Advisors and YIAG were given awards to recognise their efforts working in partnership to help support young people across the borough. They recently worked together to survey young people in A&E about their experience of urgent care as part of a commission for independent consumer champion Healthwatch Waltham Forest.

Members of both groups have also become regular helpers at some of the Council’s Get Together events. This year they assisted at the Leyton Big Weekender and Walthamstow Garden Party, carrying out satisfaction surveys as well as helping with event management.

Cllr Mark Rusling, the Council’s Cabinet Member for Children and Young People, said: “The young members of the YIAG and the Young Advisors are an absolute credit to their community and rightly deserve to be recognised for their hard work speaking up for fellow young people, striving to make our borough an even better place to live and establishing themselves as remarkable youth leaders.

“What really stands out about the members of both groups is that they come from all walks of life and backgrounds. There are ex-offenders who have turned their lives around; determined young people who have grown up in care; school, college and university students with ambitions of greatness; and driven young parents – together they are giving all young people in Waltham Forest a voice.”

Learn more about the work carried out by Waltham Forest’s Young Advisors, including how to get involved, by visiting 

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