Renfrewshire Council

Siobhan Gray is Scotland's Youth Worker of the Year 2022

Congratulations to youth worker, Siobhan Gray, for being recognised as Scotland's Youth Worker of the Year at the National Youth Awards 2022.

Fiona Taylor and Siobhan Gray at National Youth Awards 2022
Manager Fiona Taylor and Siobhan
Siobhan was praised for her life-changing work with Erskine Youth Council and fierce commitment to youth empowerment, a true champion for local young people.

A true ambassador of our values, Siobhan strives every day to help and do what she can for those who need her. One young person described her as "always up for giving everything a go, no matter how crazy our ideas are, the first to support us when needed and never backs away from a challenge."

Siobhan said, "It feels really amazing to have won this award. There are so many inspirational youth workers in Scotland so to be nominated was such an honour. But to win, that was so unexpected and such a wonderful moment."

Siobhan is inspired by the young people she works with and motivated by the impact she can have supporting them on their journeys. "I love to see them grow in confidence and self-esteem. Supporting them to reach higher, find new opportunities and seeing their achievements along the way is what makes me smile every day."

Siobhan's recent work includes the new interactive play park at Bargarran - the first-of-its-kind in Scotland.

"I helped Erskine Youth Council with the consultation process, visiting schools to hear from children and find out what they wanted in their local play park. We then worked with Jupiter Play and some of my colleagues from our Community Learning & Development and Community Safety Partnership teams. It was brilliant to be able to work so collaboratively and show young people what can be achieved. I'd like to shout out to Nicola Drummond,lead officer for community capacity building, for helping us access the funding we needed and a special thanks to Graham Ternent, lead officer for place and assets, for his hard work and support to make it all happen."

Looking ahead, Siobhan will be working in partnership with our children's services department and WhoCares? Scotland to relaunch the Children's Champions board. She explained, "The project will facilitate a team of 'Promise Champions' to support care experienced young people, helping them to get their voices heard and share their thoughts and views about the care system in Renfrewshire. We will also be linking their work to The Promise campaign to make sure all professionals that work with care experienced young people can ensure they #KeepthePromise."

You can learn more about the work being done to improve the lives of care experienced children and young people in Scotland onThe Promise website.

For Siobhan, the future is bright as she plans to continue doing the work she enjoys most - supporting the young people of Renfrewshire. She added, "At the awards event, I heard a few statements that really stuck with me, as they completely sum up why I do what I do..."

"Youth work saves lives" 

"Young people are the future"

"Young people will save this world"

Published on Thursday 9 June 2022