Meet the #YSAwards 2021 Finalists

We are thrilled to reveal the extraordinary young finalists in this year’s Sunday Mail Young Scot Awards 2021.

This year, the Sunday Mail Young Scot Awards is taking place ONLINE. This means that everybody – no matter where they live – can join in on the event.

The Sunday Mail Young Scot Awards 2021 event is taking place ONLINE on Thursday 22nd April 2021 at 7pm.

BOOK YOUR FREE TICKET FOR THE #YSAWARDS

Plus there'll be entertainment from a few special guests! 

Have a look at our amazing finalists below. 

Unsung Hero

Jack Mullen, 14 and Alfie King, 12, Dumbarton

During the first lockdown, the boys teamed up to sing outside local care homes to cheer up residents who were not able to see their families. They also created hampers full of goodies and delivered them to frontline workers.

Mollie-Rose Shields, 12, Clydebank

Through each lockdown, Mollie-Rose has done all that she can to spread community cheer. Last year, she used her own money to buy 40 Easter eggs to leave outside houses with a rainbow in the window.

Kieran Reid, 11, Amoch, The Black Isle

Kieran helped to raise more than £10,000 for the RNLI as a way of saying thank you to the Kessock Lifeboat Crew who searched for his dad when he was washed overboard from a trawler and drowned.

Young Hero

Brynn Hauxwell, 15, Yell, Shetland

The teenager completed a gruelling charity challenge and pushed himself in his wheelchair nearly 1,700 miles and raised more than £8,000 for Ability Shetland.

Catie-Jean France, 14, Falkirk

The teenager, who is not a strong swimmer, jumped into a canal to rescue her five-year-old sister who had veered off the towpath on her bike and fallen in the water.

Lucy Challoner, 23, Edinburgh

When COVID-19 restrictions meant that she was stopped from seeing her mum for nine months, Lucy took the brave decision to remove her mum from her care home and look after her herself. She is a key member of the Care Home Relative Scotland group, which forced the Scottish Government to allow each care home resident a designated visitor.

Enhancing Education

Kieran Miller, 17, Edinburgh

Despite all the adversities he has faced, Kieran will be the first in his family to break the cycle of poverty and become self-sufficient. Kieran has funded himself growing up by working nights and weekends since he was 15. This hard earned money has gone towards buying school uniforms, haircuts and basic supplies that not many other pupils would need to think about.

Rachel Eve Talbot, 13, Brechin, Angus

Rachel has given up her own time to continue the Think B4 You Type anti-bullying message. She has presented a speech at the NSPCC all member convention and recently chaired the national launch of the Think B4 You Type toolkit to schools. She works tirelessly to fight against bullying, setting up a report and counselling service in her own school and is looking to have an app made to allow people to report bullying anonymously.

Yehya Al Deri, 21, Kilbirnie, Ayrshire

Arriving in Scotland from Syria, 21 year old Yehya volunteered with the Connected Communities team as a Community Interpreter. He has helped to facilitate focus groups during Challenge Poverty weeks, and ensured that seldom-heard voices were heard as well as helped facilitate language cafes in his hometown.

Environment

Elliot Overmeer Hay, 11, East Linton, East Lothian

During the first lockdown of 2020, Elliot stumbled on some beehives which weren’t being used on some local farm land. He took it upon himself to ask the landowner if he could have them to which the owner agreed. Shortly after, he refurbished the hives and now looks after his own bees and is now in the process of making lip balm from his honey.

Police Scotland Youth Volunteers Glasgow, aged 13-18

Oatlands Gate Allotments in Glasgow were in desperate need for assistance and the opportunity to help rebuild the allotments and support the community struck a chord with the young people.The transformation was amazing. In doing this the youths have positively made an impact on the negative perception they are faced with in today’s society.

The Ullapool Sea Savers, 11-16, Highlands

The children at Ullapool Sea Savers work as a team to highlight the causes and campaign for the sea and environment, whilst trying to educate others online and in person when possible. The team work hard to carry out beach cleans as well as leading a campaign this year called #LaybyLitterPick to try tackling litter in laybys caused by the influx of tourists.

Art

Iona Fyfe, 22, Aberdeenshire/Glasgow

This young person already has a raft of accolades under her belt, proving not only is she a talented performer in her own right but what stands her apart is the passion she shows for promoting Doric and Scottish language.

Art Boss Young Producers, 15-18, Renfrewshire

Art Boss Young producers is a closed group open to young people aged 14-18 who are either care experienced, young carers or wish to gain support with improving their mental health and wellbeing, confidence and self-esteem. These young people are interested in developing new skills through the arts to produce content, media or events which promote positive well being to other young people within Renfrewshire.

Rhythm Nation Dance Crew, 5-18, Stonehaven, Aberdeenshire

Rhythm Nation Dance Crews are 6 street dance crews aged 5 to 18 years who perform at local community and charity events as well as competing at World Championship level. The crews learn to support each other and promote positive mental health, inclusive as well as keeping fit.

Sport

Kayleigh Haggo, 22, Maybole, Ayrshire

Kayleigh, who has cerebral palsy, is a GB para-athlete gold medalist from Dubai 2019. Now her aim is to take part in the Paralympics in 2024.

Kate Daykin, 24, Dalgety Bay, Fife

Kate is an established member of the senior GB team and was the first female sabre fencer this century to be selected for the 2019 Senior World Championships. She now has her sights set on qualifying for the 2024 Olympics.

Morgan Sorrell, 17, Port Glasgow, Inverclyde

Port Glasgow Juniors Community football star Morgan devotes all his free time to coaching young people. He also volunteers at the nursery soccer school.

Community

Demi Lee Kelly, 21, Clydebank

From baking cupcakes for elderly neighbours and making sure they have everything they need, to surprising care home workers with trays of scones, Demi has gone above and beyond doing tiny acts of kindness for her community during the pandemic.

Kyle McKay, 11, Munlochy, Inverness-shire

Kyle, who was gifted his own personalised push-along gritter, has been keeping his Highland neighbourhood safe by salting the roads and pavements during bad weather spells. Any money donated for his efforts is given to Munlochy Animal Aid.

Freya Young, 23, Eaglesham, East Renfrewshire

Freya created a street library containing more than 1,000 donated books, DVDs, CDs, board games and jigsaws for people in her community. She also made deliveries to those who were shielding.

Entertainment

Ellie Diamond, 22, Dundee, and Lawrence Chaney, 23, Helensburgh

These glamorous drag queens were the first Scottish people to appear on Ru Paul’s Drag Race - which Lawrence won - and did Scotland proud. Both spoke openly about their experiences of growing up gay and hope by appearing on the show they will encourage other young people to be true to themselves.

Paige Turley, 23, Fauldhouse, West Lothian

Paige was the first Scottish person to win Love Island. Since leaving the villa, signer Paige, who reached the semi-final of Britain’s Got Talent in 2012 when she was 14, has been using her influencer status to inspire young girls to stay grounded and has become an ambassador for Action for Children.

Peter Sawkins, 20, Balerno, Edinburgh

The Edinburgh University student became the first Scottish person and the youngest winner of the Great British Bake Off in 2020. Since then, he’s cooked live on Good Morning America and served up a campaign to support Scottish food and drink.

Health and Wellbeing

Callum Christie and Logan Fenton, both 15, Cupar, Fife

The boys helped to raise £3,000 to buy a full-time therapy dog to help vulnerable young people at their school, Bell Baxter High School. Golden Retriever Bella arrived last year and has been working with and changing the lives of dozens of young people.

Chillax - Youth Action on Mental Health, 14-15, Shetland

These young volunteers are committed to helping young people living in one of the remotest parts of Scotland look after their mental health by delivering workshops on coping strategies to schools and youth clubs.

Include Me 2 Volunteers, 14-25, East Renfrewshire

These volunteers help to run a weekly social club for children, young people and adults with additional support needs, where they enjoy a variety of fun activities.

Enterprise

Ailsa Smart, 25, Dunoon

The young entrepreneur set up social enterprise Ailsa’s Art-e-fax and has been selling her illustrations and branded cotton bags in a range of outlets. She gives donations of her profits to several community organisations.

Lauren James, 18, Livingston

Diagnosed with anorexia two years ago, Lauren hit rock bottom and was forced to drop out of school due to her health. She has since turned her life around after setting up her own jewelry business and donates 10% of her online sales to Beat, the UK charity that supports those affected by eating disorders.

Stagg Coffee at Monifieth High School Barista Team, Angus

The enterprise initiative saw the pupils take responsibility for setting up all aspects of their barista business, including training staff, creating menus, dealing with suppliers, banking and making deliveries.

Equality & Diversity

Active Life Club, 11-23, Govanhill, Glasgow

From badminton, cricket and football to life coaching and outdoor pursuits, these young people are helping to tackle racism through sport. During the pandemic, the young people organised weekly Zoom sessions and volunteers gave food packs to young people and their families.

Girlguiding Scotland Speak Out Champions 2020, 15-24

This group of 20 Girl Guides developed a campaign calling on the public, media outlets, politicians and government to bring an end to sexism and gender stereotypes in the media.

S5 Prefect Team at Mearns Castle High School, 16-17, Glasgow

The teenagers started a campaign to raise awareness of the plight of refugees in and around Glasgow. They gathered donations of non-perishable food, toiletries and toys which they distributed to refugee families.

Volunteering

Aiden McGrogan, 17, Paisley, Renfrewshire

During the pandemic, Aiden has helped deliver over 6000 food parcels; collect 250 prescriptions; assisted in the organisation of a socially distanced afternoon tea for shielding residents; helped arrange an alternative prom for local Glencoats and St Fergus Primary School and travels a 26 mile round trip 3 nights per week to 4 Coop and 3 Greggs stores collecting surplus food for those in need, in return reducing waste.

Young Covid Volunteers - NHS Lothian

149 young people have given over 17,000 hours of their time so far during the most demanding circumstances they may ever face. Known as the NHS Lothian Covid-19 Volunteers, they work across the health board making a genuine difference to the lives of hospital patients.

Fatima Isahq, 16, Dundee

Fatima is an active member of several organisations in and outside of her school environment. Committed and passionate about helping others she is the secretary of the Mental Health Ambassador team at her school and she coordinates all of the school fundraising activities. Fatima is also involved with Dundee Youth Council; NSPCC ‘Young Woman Know’ group; Dundee City Councils Children and Families Services Committee.

International

Ghulam Muhammad Baig, 21, Glasgow

He has made an immense contribution to the disabled community both in Scotland and developing countries like his ancestral home of Pakistan. He has forged a link with the Student Association of the City of Glasgow College, developing a Facebook page for this, and developed City SA disable network to support disabled students. He has started an online disabled rights advocacy forum Gilgit Baltistan Goodwill Movement.

International Ambassadors, 17, Ayr

This remarkable group of young people has worked hard to raise the profile of international education within their school and community to generate a positive impact on young people in partner schools in Europe and beyond.

Mashal Aamir, 25, Glasgow

Currently training to be a barrister specialising in international criminal law, 25 year old Mashal acted as a mentor that assists incoming international students studying in the UK. During her degree she further supported students from various international backgrounds through her role as President of the Duke of Edinburgh Society.

Head back to the Young Scot Awards page.