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Young Citizen: Chigwell volunteer, 17, loves making difference to children with special needs

PUBLISHED: 09:31 12 July 2018 | UPDATED: 09:34 12 July 2018

Millie West receives her award. Photo: David Solomon

Millie West receives her award. Photo: David Solomon

Archant

A 17-year-old Chigwell volunteer dedicated to helping children with special education needs within the borough’s Jewish community is this week’s Young Citizen nominee.

Millie West, of Oak Lodge Avenue, has been volunteering at the community centre run by charity Jewish Care, in Woodford Bridge Road, for more than five years.

She has been involved in everything from running weekly clubs to supporting half-term schemes such as Summerworld while enrolled in the charity’s Motivation, Inspiration, Knowledge and Empowerment (Mike) programme.

Millie was awarded the Saul Keene award for excellence in youth leadership at a Jewish Care ceremony last month.

“I love building bonds and it’s a great feeling knowing that what you do really makes a difference to a child’s day and makes a real impact,” she said.

Speaking to the Recorder, she added: “I have also volunteered at Wohl Ilford Jewish Primary School helping with after school clubs and winter fetes.

“And Mitzvah Day is a volunteering experience that I thoroughly enjoy, collecting food for those in need.”

The former Kantor King Solomon pupil hopes to study speech and language therapy at university in September.

Danny Keene, presenting the award, said: “[Millie’s] patience, empathy and care for others is outstanding and these qualities make the work she does with children with special educational needs so important.

“She has the skills to create a safe space for the children that attend our weekly clubs and schemes and puts in the time and effort to get to know each child, so they can have as much fun as possible.”

The community centre has now nominated Millie for this month’s Young Citizen Award.

The Recorder/Redbridge Rotary Club Young Citizen Award is about celebrating the amazing young people in our borough.

It is run by the Recorder in conjunction with Redbridge Rotary Club, and sponsored by The Exchange shopping centre, Ilford, which provides each monthly winner with a £30 gift card. The Young Citizen of the Year will be crowned at the Mayor’s Community Awards.

You can nominate any person from Redbridge, as long as they are under-25, by emailing aaron.walawalkar@archant.co.uk.

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