On Thursday 5 October, over 120 school children, parents and business professionals from across Birmingham came together at RBS offices for the final of the Birmingham Civic Society Next Generation Awards. Now in its 12th year, the Next Generation Awards bring young people together in teams to devise a plan to improve one aspect of life for people living in Birmingham. Each year around 20 schools and 4000 pupils take part in this enrichment programme.
On the evening, each of the five finalist teams presented their ideas to a panel of business and education professionals. This year’s winning project was from a team of students from King Edward VI Camp Hill School for Girls, who presented ‘Growing Green’ a project working with local primary schools
to make and maintain living wall planters, made from recycled milk bottles. The girls have been awarded £1500 and mentoring support to help develop their idea into a reality.
The Growing Green project was chosen by a panel of judges which included; Andy Mitchell, Head of Conduct & Controls for Customers, Commercial Banking at Royal Bank of Scotland; Louise Ducker, Office Services Manager for Anthony Collins Solicitors LLP; Anne Ainsworth is Assistant Director for Pathways & Participation at Birmingham City Council; Inez Brown, is Partner at Harrison Clark Rickerbys. Chair of the panel was Chris Wormwell, Director of Marketing Newman University.
Other finalist projects included;
· Turves Green Girls’ School and Technology College – Healthy Hunters – a healthy eating and activity project and club.
· Balaam Wood School – ABC – a restorative approach to tackling bullying in schools.
· Lordswood Boys’ School – Water Keepers – a project to install a water fountain within a park for the community to use.
· King Edward VI Handsworth School for Girls – Toys for Tods – provision of backpacks of toys and educational games etc to be distributed to low income families via foodbanks.
Gavin Orton, Chairman of Birmingham Civic Society commented; “Our Next Generation Award finals are always a highlight of the year – the room is filled with young, passionate, energetic citizens who are full of great ideas on how we can make Birmingham a better place for everyone. This year, each and every one of the projects was of a very high calibre and we’d like to congratulate all of the schools for getting this far. We can’t wait to hear from the winners next year, in our centenary year, to see how they’ve progressed Growing Green”
The Next Generation Awards is run by The Birmingham Civic Society and has been made possible in 2016/2017 with the support of Newman University, Professional Polishing Services Ltd, Anthony Collins Solicitors and The Royal Bank of Scotland, and by the generosity of a number of local Birmingham charitable trusts and foundations including the Heart of England Community Foundation.