Newbattle High School pupil Ellie Russell won the prize for outstanding achievement at the inaugural Midlothian’s Young People Awards last Friday.
Ellie, who represented Scotland at the Commonwealth Games in Australia in April, was among six award winners at the special ceremony held at Penicuik House.
Gymnast Ellie was recognised after a year which has seen her win gold on vault, and silver on uneven bars and the beam at the Scottish Artistic Gymnastic Championships in March – her first senior tournament.
She was then selected for the Gold Coast Games helping Scotland finish fifth in the team event.
Ellie said: “It was absolutely fantastic to receive the award, especially as it’s come from those in the community who have supported me so much on my journey.
“It was really great to see so many other young people recognised for the amazing things they are doing too.”
Other winners on the day included Zac Treacy who picked up the Local Community prize for his support of Dalkeith Tesco’s community work and Swara Suliman who won the Caring and Volunteering award for his work with Soccer City and the Midlothian Champions Board.
Blair Henderson, who volunteers with the Disability Snowsport Scotland Hillend group was named winner in the Sports and Physical Activity category, while the Achievement in Learning award went to Cory Cummings who has overcome difficult circumstances to make amazing progress through PAVE, the Programme of Alternative Vocational Education.
The National Mining Museum Scotland Youth Panel were also winners, picking up the Arts and Culture Award for their work highlighting the Year of Young People 2018 in Midlothian.
Each winner and runner up received a prize which will be gifted to a Midlothian community group or local charity of their choice.
Organised by Midlothian Council and the Lord-Lieutenant of Midlothian to mark the Year of Young People 2018, the awards concluded with an afternoon tea which was provided in partnership with Edinburgh College, Police Scotland Youth Volunteers and the Midlothian Youth Platform. There was also a performance by the Roslin Primary School Choir.
Midlothian’s Lord-Lieutenant, Sir Robert M Clerk Bt, said: “The purpose of these inaugural awards was to draw attention to the wonderful contributions made by young people to different aspects of life in Midlothian.
“With so many worthy and inspiring winners, we have certainly done that and I congratulate them all on their great achievements.
“I hope that all of the finalists will feel very proud of their success in Midlothian’s Young People Awards and be encouraged to continue their good work into the future.”
Midlothian Provost, Cllr Peter Smaill, said: “Congratulations to all the winners and runners up at the first ever Midlothian’s Young People Awards.”