Community safety warden Carolyn Bircham has scored a personal triumph for her work in setting up football with matches for young people and giving them the chance to help design a new play area.
Carolyn's extra commitment to her role as Redcar and Cleveland Council's warden supervisor for South Bank, Grangetown and Teesville was 'highly commended' by the annual North East Regional Wardens awards, organised by the Middlesbrough-based North East Regional Resource Centre.
The Council's warden service was also applauded by the Centre, funded by the Department for Communities and Local Government, for achieving a distinction for the Neighbourhood Renewal Fund's nationally-recognised quality standard. Centre manager Sian Bunn said: "Redcar and Cleveland did extremely well - not only did they achieve the national standard, but achieved it with a distinction."
Carolyn was quick to praise her team after collecting the award in the 'excellence in working for young people' category - Lesley Fell, Louise Dobson and Dave Grimwood, along with Police Community Support Officer Paul Walker. "To be recognised for the work we've done was fantastic - as far as I'm concerned, it was a team award."
She was also delighted to report more sporting progress - with the creation of a football league next month and a hoped-for start by Coast & Country Housing to create a recreation area on wasteland at the junction of Steel Crescent and Strauss Road, South Bank in the spring.
The Council's Cabinet Member for Community Safety Councillor Joyce Benbow had special praise for Carolyn and the warden service.
"I think it's absolutely excellent, thoroughly well deserved. She's done a lot of work with young people and the more work that's done like this to keep them out of trouble, the better for everybody.
"I think our service continues to improve and with the recruitment of a dozen new wardens next month, it will improve further and make the lives of residents much happier."