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Frontline Award for Young People

Kindly supported by The Fairer Fostering Partnership, the Rangoonwala Foundation and The Care Leaders

Artur – Winner!

Artur is chair of Islington’s Children’s Active Involvement Service. He’s worked tirelessly to improve the support for Islington young people for over 5 years. Whether setting up a food and toiletry bank, decorating the contact centre or lobbying for suitable housing for care leavers, he has made a huge impact. He has achieved all this (and more) while also achieving a distinction in his Business BTEC and training as a freelance make-up artist.


Alex is a member of the Norfolk in Care Council and an active change-maker, both for the local authority and other voluntary sector organisations. Fiercely committed and dedicated to improving social care services for other children and young people, she has got involved with many projects and activities. Most recently she delivered an impressive speech at the local family justice board to over 50 practitioners about the importance of inclusive practice within court proceedings.

Addy – Winner!

Addy has written and recorded ten songs. His first song, ‘I Can Do Anything’, is about his disability not holding him back in life. Outside of music he has completed his Bronze Duke of Edinburgh Award and is currently working towards the Silver Award. Addy has also set up his own car wash business to raise money for a cerebral palsy charity. He is focused on shaping his own care experience and he is passionate about improving the experiences of other young people in care.


Abbie is passionate, enthusiastic, welcoming, supportive, approachable and creative. She is an amazing mum, as well as a corporate parenting advisor. She has led several key pieces of work with the aim of widening participation opportunities for young people in care and care leavers. She champions the voices of young parents, delivers training for local authority staff and has led on work around family hubs, ensuring the voice of young people is represented.

Annie – Winner!

Annie is an amazing individual, wonderful mum and a great corporate parenting advisorAnnie’s approach to working and listening to young people in care and care leavers has resulted in real visible changes to services and policies that make such a difference to young people. She has led a consultation on care experience as a protected characteristic, secured a household living fund for care leavers and helped review, reshape and re-launch children’s residential care in the area. Last year she graduated university with a degree in counselling.


Ash has been a TACT Connect member and Connect Advisor for a number of years, creating positive change in both TACT as an organisation and Connect as a community. She played a key part in the creation of the TACT ‘language that cares’ glossary and took part in a research in practice study about the pandemic and how this impacted on loneliness for care leavers. Ash has now moved onto her dream career, currenting working as a policewoman and trainee detective.


Katie has created meaningful change through her professional and voluntary work, mainly by sharing her care experience to help improve children and family services. She has worked with Frontline since 2018 as a care experienced assessor, offering valuable insight about applicants who are applying to become social workers on the Frontline programme. Katie also works as an assistant project worker at Barnardo’s, engaging with a number of projects which focus on the welfare and care of vulnerable young people.


Sarah joined the Care to Dance team as a mentor to other young people last year, offering support during classes and outside of the studio, guiding them towards their goals. She is currently undertaking her dance leadership qualification, as well as a higher level teaching assistant qualification and has passed her first module. Alongside all of that, Sarah is chair of Oxfordshire Children in Care Council, leading change within the local authority for young people in care. It is clear that Sarah holds young people at the forefront of her mind in everything that she does, ensuring that they are heard, listened to and supported.


Sarah started her own non-profit organisation to help support young people all around the world in their education journey. Her organisation has started a number of programmes, one of which is free online tutoring for students in Syria, Palestine, Jordan, Morocco and Lebanon. Her motivation, determination and passion for education and community development are made even more evident through the volunteering she has undertaken whilst at college, completing up to 170 hours of volunteering.


Bryony completed a degree despite the significant challenges she faced in her younger life. It hasn’t been easy for her, but she remained dedicated to her goals and didn’t let these challenges impact her studies. She has now returned to Nottingham to teach law at a local college, where she is an incredible asset in her new role educating young people.

Frontline Award for Leadership

Kindly supported by Tile Hill

Celia, Islington – Winner!

Celia has over 10 years social work experience in child protection. She leads passionately and fiercely to improve service delivery and social work practice, which in turn has achieved the best outcomes for children at risk. Celia has been instrumental in a number of initiatives, such as the Edge of Care Service, and she designs and delivers training for the community.

Claire, Lewisham

Claire demonstrates outstanding social work leadership within Lewisham, prioritising the wellbeing of the entire workforce in her role as workforce wellbeing lead. She continuously champions for social workers to feel valued, supported and equipped to handle the demands of their roles. This directly translates into improved outcomes for children and families.

Emma, Norfolk

Emma has worked for Norfolk Children’s Services for an amazing 24 years and is still as determined as ever to create change for children and families, most recently in one of Dereham’s children’s homes. Emma is unwaveringly child focused, draws the best out of her team and is always thinking of new ways to provide positive experiences for young people.

Gareth, Lancashire

Gareth has demonstrated exceptional leadership and innovation in the field of fostering by leading the development of a mentoring programme for foster carers within Lancashire’s fostering service. He is a dedicated team manager, who is kind, friendly and a good communicator and has most importantly made a big impact for foster carers.

Frontline Award for Practice

Kindly supported by 31ten Consulting

Alex, Hampshire

Alex is a brilliant, funny and down to earth person who will do anything for anyone. He goes above and beyond in his role as a social worker and is always fighting for what is best for the young people he supports. He builds strong, lasting relationships that make a meaningful difference and is committed to creating change for children and young people.

Ela, Darlington

Ela works directly with children in care, keeping their needs at the centre of all she does. She is a passionate advocate for these children and young people and strives to ensure they have the right support, at the right time. She is dynamic, caring and empathetic and is often someone who the team turns to in difficult situations. Ela guides new social workers on how to manage risk effectively and is an asset to the team.  

Kasey, Southwark

Kasey is always looking for improvements and new ways to support children and young people. She takes a particular interest in intersectionality, diversity and inclusion and has used her own experiences in her work with families, as well as to support other social workers. In everything that Kasey does she is pushing for equality and best outcomes. 

Kenneth, Islington – Winner!

Kenneth is a core part to the children in need team in Islington. He’s reliable, intelligent and extremely hard working. He has a keen curiosity and builds strong and compassionate relationships. Kenneth never shies away from going the extra mile to support children, families or colleagues. He keeps children’s wellbeing at the heart of all decision making.

Samantha, Islington

Samantha is passionate about her role, working in collaboration with children, young people and their families to create the change they need. She creates trusting relationships with families, using this skill to effectively support parents with chronic health needs and learning difficulties to improve their parenting capacity, highlighting the strengths they hold.

Frontline Award for Team of the Year

Kindly supported by Hamptons.

Islington’s IRO team

Islington’s IRO (independent reviewing officer) team works alongside social workers to ensure that children’s voices and lived experiences are heard, known and considered. The team are dedicated, compassionate and fierce advocates for children in care. They balance competing points of view, navigate complex demands, but never compromise on the best interests of the children in care.

Route 1, Somerset

The Route 1 team recruit, train and support volunteers to support children and young people, a priority in Somerset. There is a strong learning culture within the team which is replicated in the quality training and induction process they provide; this has a positive impact on safety and wellbeing for all involved. The child’s needs and voice is at the heart of everything they do. 

Staying Close, Darlington – Winner!

Darlington’s Staying Close is a newly formed team who work with 22 young people who are transitioning from children’s homes or supported accommodation to independent living. Everything from physical accommodation to social events, life skills training and much more has been designed around children. The team consistently go above and beyond for young people. 

Frontline Award for Innovation

Kindly supported by The Portal Trust.

Jo Ritchie – Winner!

Jo has tirelessly supported children, young people and women who are being or have been sexually exploited. Her vast experience ranges from over 10 years with Barnardo’s, her innovative work in Hawaii, with the Bluewater Mission Justice Ministry, reaching out to sex trafficking victims, to most recently setting up Night Light with Avon and Somerset Police. A project that partners with street sex workers aiming to support and identify children at highest risk of exploitation.

Jonny Hoyle

Jonny has worked for North Yorkshire Council his whole career in various roles and has recently started working on a project to reimagine case management using artificial intelligence. Tools like this could enable social workers to spend less time searching for information and more time doing valuable work with children and families.  

Kyrene Darko

Kyrene has been a qualified social worker for over 10 years and is passionate about social work leadership and wellbeing. This passion led her to start the Social Work Leaders podcast, promoting and encouraging leadership in social work, and to create The Social Work Mentor, a variety of resources for new and aspiring managers.