Points of Light are outstanding individual volunteers – people who are making a change in their community. Every weekday the Prime Minister recognises an inspirational volunteer with the Daily Point of Light award. There are now over 1100 Points of Light in the UK, highlighting an enormous range of innovative and inspirational volunteering across our country.
Each Point of Light had an idea they decided to make a reality – everything from tackling knife crime to supporting families of dementia patients. Their actions have changed lives. And their stories can inspire thousands more to get involved or start their own initiatives.
Our youngest award winners – young people, like #iwill ambassadors – are passionate and creative, and effecting change well beyond their years. They take a problem, they think of the answer, and they mobilise others to help solve it. They’re people like Nadia Sparkes – aged 13, from Norwich – a leading anti-litter campaigner known as ‘Trash Girl’ for her drive to encourage schoolchildren to keep their local environment clean. Shocked by the waste she would see on her cycle to school, Nadia began regularly clearing it up on her way home, collecting over 3,000 litres of litter.
Called ‘Trash Girl’ by bullies at her school, Nadia turned the name-calling into a positive through an online community group campaign, encouraging her peers to take action on litter. Her campaign has been picked up by ‘Greenpeace’, ‘WWF’ and ‘Keep Britain Tidy’, and has since gone viral, with her online following growing to over 4,000 people.
There’s also Junior Frood – aged 15 from Leeds – the UK freestyle street dance champion who’s using his talent to campaign against bullying and encourage more boys to get involved in the sport. Junior responded to being bullied at school for his love of dancing by launching an anti-bullying social media campaign #BoysCanDance. He’s worked with the Diana Award as a schools ambassador, empowering young people to stand up to bullies and be themselves.
Emboldened by the positive response he received, Junior began performing for charities close to his heart. At Martin House Hospice, he runs dance workshops for adults and children with disabilities and life-limiting illnesses. He’s raised over £300,000 for the hospice and other charities, supporting seriously ill children through his performances. Earlier this year Junior became Youth Ambassador for Children’s Heart Surgery Fund, who support poorly babies, children and adults being treated at the Leeds Congenital Heart Unit.
Every Point of Light is an individual, but we see a common trait in them all: the will to do. Nadia and Junior show us that the desire to change something for the better is hugely powerful – and never more so than by harnessing the will of others too.
Read more about the inspiring work of our Points of Light at www.pointsoflight.gov.uk