Swansea City star's praise for young achievers
FOOTBALL star Leon Britton is used to winning praise from Swans fans but tonight he will be the one celebrating the achievements of others at a special ceremony.
The 30-year-old midfielder — who has made more than 400 appearances for the side — is presenting Swansea Council's new High 5 Awards honouring inspirational youngsters.
More than 80 young people aged 19 and under have been nominated for a High 5 award which seeks to recognise the achievements of younger members of Swansea's communities.
Leon, who is hailed a fantastic role model for the next generation and is one of a handful of players that has played in all four divisions with the same club, said today he was delighted to be asked to get on board for the awards.
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He said: "Children and young people in Swansea do so many positive things with their lives and in their communities but often do not get the credit they deserve.
"That's why I was happy to get involved in these awards aimed at reminding everyone that we should be proud of the young people in our communities.
"I hope these award winners will inspire young people to believe in themselves and work hard to follow their dreams."
The High 5 Awards are being organised by Swansea Council with sponsorship from Gower College Swansea and supported by Swansea City FC, Swansea Sound and The Wave, Bishop of Swansea and Brecon John Davies and the Rotary Club.
Children and young people have been at the centre of the High 5 Awards and the ideas for the ceremony came out of Swansea Council's consultation with young people to help recognise the positive contribution they make and to counteract the negative publicity young people get nationwide. Awards are up for grabs in four categories — environment, achiever, enterprise and community.
Council chief executive and a High 5 judge Jack Straw said: "I am delighted that Leon and the Swans are on board with these awards.
"The stories behind the High 5 nominations we received are truly inspirational and I am very much looking forward to meeting the winners at the award ceremony."
The award ceremony was taking place from 6.30pm in the Platinum Suite, Liberty Stadium, Swansea.