Bright, young stars receive PM's awards
Published: Wednesday | December 9, 2009
Andrew Wildes, a Gleaner reporter, was among a host of Jamaica's bright young stars who received Prime Minister's Youth Awards for Excellence at the weekend.
"I really put a lot of effort into being a journalist. It's one of the areas of my life where I put in tremendous energy, and to be awarded for it means a lot," said Wildes, who was unable to attend the ceremony at Emancipation Park on Sunday because he is studying in Barbados.
In a telephone interview, the budding writer, who was one of 17 recipients, showered praise on his family for their support, mentioning his brother, Stephen Wildes, who collected the award on his behalf.
Another awardee, Siaelda Green, had nothing but adulation for her family.
"They are my rock, my shield, my everything. Without them I wouldn't be able to do half of the things I have done," said Green, who was recognised in the category of leadership.
Her voice oozed pride and excitement when she spoke with The Gleaner on Monday.
"I am ecstatic, I am overjoyed. I am jumping up and down still," she said, laughing.
Green explained that she was interviewed for the award but there was no indication of who had been selected. Up to the night of the event, she said she was not optimistic about winning. Even now, she said, the reality of the honour has not sunk in but she is celebrating every moment.
Meanwhile, Minister of Youth, Sports and Culture, Olivia Grange, thanked the families and communities who were the backbone of the 27 nominees.
"Let there be no mistake about the invaluable role that family and communities have played in moulding our young people into the achievers that many of them are today," said Grange.
The Prime Minister's Youth Award is awarded to Jamaicans between the ages of 15 and 24 who have achieved eminent national and international distinction in various categories.
Arts and Culture
National Synchronised Swimming Team: Michelle-Ann Gabbadon, Tashna Smith-Edwards and Shannon March.
Youth in Service
Prime Minister's Youth Organisation Service Award
RISE Life Management Services