Young people from Hemel Hempstead win Royal award for care home garden makeover

The group were celebrated at a star-studded virtual awards ceremony

Friday, 12th March 2021, 9:58 am

A group of young people from Hemel Hempstead have won a national Prince’s Trust Award for developing part of a care home garden.

Team 8 were celebrated at a star-studded virtual awards ceremony yesterday (March 11) after developing a section of a care home garden to make it easier for residents to enjoy the outdoors and to facilitate gardening activities.

They won the prestigious Dell Technologies Community Impact Award that recognises the positive contribution young people make to their local community or school whilst developing

Team 8 were celebrated at a star-studded virtual awards ceremony yesterday

their own skills.

The ceremony was hosted by Ant and Dec and featured appearances by celebrities including Dame Helen Mirren, Anne-Marie, Idris Elba, Alesha Dixon, Holly Willoughby, and Philip Schofield.

The Prince’s Trust and TK Maxx and Homesense Awards recognise young people who have turned their life around, succeeded against the odds, and had a positive impact on their local community.

Congratulating the young people on their well-deserved awards, this year’s winners received a very special video message from Founder and President of The Prince’s Trust, HRH The Prince of Wales.

In the pre-recorded video message, Founder and President of The Prince’s Trust, HRH The Prince of Wales said: “I would like to send my most heartfelt congratulations to all of this year’s award winners, each of you has inspired us with your determination, your incredible spirit and your commitment to working towards a truly positive future.”

As part of their Team programme, the young people ran a community project, that would help residents at the Alexandra Care Home in Hemel Hempstead, enjoy the home’s garden and see their friends and family, when visiting restrictions allow, by enhancing part of a garden.

Some of the team have spent the last six months with little or no social interaction, triggering mental health issues and exacerbating struggles with depression and anxiety.

Working on the project gave the team a real support system. Since completing the project many of the young people have moved into more positive outcomes for themselves, both personally and professionally with many of them upskilling and moving into employment.

Members of the team continue to volunteer at the care home to help maintain the space for their new resident friends.

After being presented with the Dell Technologies Community Impact Award, Joe, one of the team members said: “We were all so glad to do something positive during these dark days.

"It was really rewarding to be able to help on this project and to make the garden an even nicer place for the residents to enjoy."

Katy Bowen, Prince’s Trust Delivery Partner Manager at Hertfordshire Fire and Rescue Service, who run the Team programme on behalf of The Trust in Hemel Hempstead said: “We have all been so impressed by the work ethos of Team 8.

"It’s been wonderful to see how they bonded as a team and that lasting friendships were made."

Dayne Turbitt, Senior Vice President & GM, Dell Technologies said: “On behalf of everyone at Dell Technologies, I am pleased to congratulate Team 8 for winning The Prince’s Trust Community Impact Award, recognising the positive contribution young people make in their local community whilst developing their own skills.

"Together they have worked to create a space and environment that brings joy to so many people in care, during what has been such a difficult time.

"Congratulations again to a thoroughly deserving team!”

Youth charity The Prince’s Trust helps young people aged 11 to 30 who are unemployed or struggling in their education to transform their lives by supporting them to realise their potential.

The Trust’s practical courses, together with the assistance of its youth support workers and mentors, equip young people with the confidence and skills they need to move into work, training and education.

Celebrity Ambassadors and Presenters Holly Willoughby and Philip Schofield said: “These young people have done so much for not only their community but themselves and should be incredibly proud of all they have achieved!"

TK Maxx and Homesense have been a partner of The Prince’s Trust since 2013 and are one of The Trust’s largest delivery partners of the Get into Retail programme.

This is a two-to-six- week course that develops young people’s skills in the retail sector and supports them into positive outcomes in retail.

Since the partnership began, over 70% of young people who have taken the course went on to full time employment at TK Maxx or Homesense.