Nominate your hero now for wow young people awards

By Jill Dando News

Bristol’s biggest annual awards celebrating outstanding local young people calls for nominations.

Bristol’s biggest annual awards that shine a light on young people across the city are once again open for nominations, with the organisers are calling on everyone locally to think about an inspiring unsung hero who deserves to be recognised and celebrated. 

Now in its 11th year, the Bristol Young Heroes Awards have supported more than 300 much deserving local young people, showcasing those who have overcome difficult circumstances, made a difference to the lives of others or achieved something extraordinary. 

Bristol Young Heroes Awards 2023 – Photography by Robbie Stephenson/Made for Impact

Nominations are open until 14 March, giving people a month to write and submit their entries online. They are open to anyone living in a BS postcode aged 11-19. 

Being nominated brings a huge range of benefits. 80% of previous nominees have reported a significant boost to their self-confidence and aspirations and said they were more likely to try something new as a result. 

Bristol Young Heroes Awards 2023 – Photography by Robbie Stephenson/Made for Impact

As well as the boost of being announced as a finalist and attending the gala awards ceremony, all finalists also now benefit from the 12-month Purposeful Pathways programme, introduced two years ago as a pilot programme by the organisation behind the awards, Community of Purpose. Following the awards night, finalists embark on a year-long journey of increased resilience, confidence and genuine opportunity where they learn about goal setting, values and purpose supported by guided personal mentors. 


Over 30 young people have taken part in the Purposeful Pathways programme so far and further funding secured by Community of Purpose means that it will now be able to support even more young people. 

Maddie, a previous Action Hero finalist, says: “It’s a really special award, you create friendships for life, you create connections, you have the opportunity to develop skills that you might not have had the opportunity to do so. 

“It will set you on a trajectory that you never would have imagined for yourself, and I know that this is definitely true for me.” 

Another previous finalist, Shanay, describes the programme: “I’d say that my experience with the Purposeful Programme was really inspiring and helpful, and it changed the way I see things in life. Being a finalist was a really big deal for me and it really helped with the way I view myself.”

Bristol Young Heroes Awards 2023 – Photography by Robbie Stephenson/Made for Impact

Amy Kington, CEO of Community of Purpose, says: “We work on a daily basis with so many amazing young people in Bristol, and for some of them life is really challenging through no fault of their own. Recognising their achievements, often in spite of adversity, is really important, and building on this to help them gain confidence, purpose and inspiration can make a massive difference to their future lives and careers. 

“All over this city there are young people doing brilliant things. We say this every year, but if there is a young person you know, particularly someone who might not feel seen, who you think deserves to have a light shone on them, then please enter them for these awards. There are 9 categories to choose from and it is completely free to enter.” 

To help people with their nominations, the Community of Purpose team have come up with a list of tips: 

1. Give as much detail as possible in your nomination to help the judges get to know the young person you’re describing and understand what they have done. 

2. Explain why you have nominated them for the particular category you’ve chosen. 

3. It doesn’t have to be beautifully written – the judges want to know the details, but they won’t be judging spelling, grammar or layout! 

4. If you’re worried about including details that may be personal to the nominee, be reassured that all entries are treated as completely confidential. Nothing will be shared publicly without agreement with the nominee. 

5. Make sure you nominate with plenty of time to spare. Nominations will close on Thursday 14th March. 

6. If you have any questions about filling in the nominations form or need a hand, get in touch with the Community of Purpose team by emailing or calling t. 0117 382 5452. 

To enter the awards, go to the website and fill in the online form: 

The nominations close on Thursday 14th March and the 2024 gala awards ceremony will take place on Friday 5th July at Bristol Harbour Hotel. The night provides a special evening for the young people and their family and friends, supported by local celebrities including actor Joe Sims and Bake Off contestant Briony Williams, business leaders and political leaders.

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