YOUNG people across the borough are celebrating after winning awards to recognise the contributions they have made in their lives.

The annual Care Leaver Awards on Friday saw 11 young people scoop prizes for work they have done in their communities, commitment to education courses, parenting skills, showing resilience and overcoming adversity.

Young care leavers are people who have previously been in care and are looked after by Wigan Council but are now living independently.

Clara Heathcote, from Leigh, was one of three who won a Special Achievement award for her commitment to her pre-apprenticeship course while raising her 16-month-old baby.

She has been praised for her positive attitude and eagerness to help others and now plans to gain a full apprenticeship working with young people when she finishes her current course.

Portfolio holder for Children and Young People at Wigan Council Cllr Jenny Bullen said: "We want all of our young care leavers to go on to achieve success in life and it is really important that their achievements are recognised so that they have confidence in themselves to help them do this.

"Many of the young people nominated for these awards have overcome significant challenges in their lives and I am very proud of them for being so resilient and, despite the challenges, going on to do well in life and to help others."

Young care leavers are provided with a personal advisor to help them to find housing, education opportunities or work and to provide social and emotional support when required.

They are also given the opportunity to influence decisions made regarding young people in care if they are successful in getting a role on the care leavers' council.

The Progression Award has been renamed the Trisha Hurlock Progression Award in memory of the personal advisor who died earlier this year and worked closely with many of the young people who won awards.

The organisation Pathways sponsored the event which took place at the DW Stadium in Wigan with Mayor of Wigan borough, Cllr Bill Clarke, was in attendance on the day.

The following young people won awards at Wigan’s Care Leaver Awards 2017:

Community Contribution: Ricia Derricott

Sports Personality: Declan Clark

Trish Hurlock Progression Award: John Heaps

Overcoming Adversity: Adele Lally

Special Achievement: Molly Bowden, Clara Heathcote, Brislida Lleshi

Parent of the Year: David Ball, Kiera Charnock

Academic Achiever: Kianna Hughes

Care Leaver of the Year: Chad Grundy