Your UK Parliament Awards 2022 - winners
The Your UK Parliament Awards celebrate people across the UK who have taken action on the issues they care about by engaging with UK Parliament.
The Your UK Parliament Awards 2022 closed on 31 January and we received a staggering 288 nominations. The winning entries were chosen by a panel of MPs, Lords and independent judges. The high standard meant that choosing the winners was not easy. All judges were very impressed by the work people are doing to connect their community with the UK Parliament.
The winners attended an Awards ceremony hosted in the Speaker’s House at the Houses of Parliament on 29 March 2022. Sir Lindsay Hoyle, Speaker of the House of Commons and Sarah Davies, Clerk Assistant House of Commons presented the trophies and congratulated the winners.
Meet the 2022 winners!
Community Campaign of the Year
Celebrates an organisation that has campaigned for change in their community.
Anna Grainger and Victoria Seaton, two Modern Languages teachers, initiated the Coventry City of Languages. They wanted to celebrate all languages spoken in their community. Their concern for lack of funding for language education, was taken up by their MP who tabled a written question to the Department of Education about support and funding for language learning. They also wanted to promote language learning and teaching as a way of building confidence, skills, aspirations and opportunities for children and young people in the city and the region.
The Coventry City of Languages was officially launched in October 2021. They got support and involvement from a number of stakeholders including their MPs, universities, schools, academics, the British Council, Coventry city council and local businesses.
By involving people across the region, Coventry City of Languages engages and mobilizes activists, teachers, learners and leaders from all backgrounds and walks of life. Through languages, they hope to make their community a fairer and more inclusive society.
Digital Campaign or Campaigner of the Year
Celebrates the work of those connecting people to democracy through digital engagement.
Lorna Fillingham has campaigned tirelessly to make Changing Places toilets mandatory in building regulations, especially for public buildings and complexes. Changing Places toilets have a hoist, adult changing bench and space for carers.
Lorna approached her campaign in many ways. To raise awareness, she appeared on local and national media, and emailed every local authority in the UK and every hospital trust in England. She also started an online petition and emailed her MP and encouraged people who signed the petition to email their MPs too.
This helped to bring about changes in building regulations. As of 2021, Changing Places toilets are mandatory in certain public buildings being built or renovated, plus there is a fund available to local authorities for building them. Lorna remains committed to her cause, emailing authorities encouraging them to take up this funding.
While the change has become mandatory to English and Scottish building regulations, Lorna continues her campaign for this to become a rule in Wales and Northern Ireland too.
School of the Year
Recognises schools which have taken action on an issue they care about and engaged with the UK Parliament on it.
It started with one student’s concern after seeing the collapse of Danish footballer Christian Eriksen in July 2021. His passion captured the interest of the whole class and soon the whole school was motivated to join him. The students from SS Peter and Paul Catholic Primary Academy campaigned to get community defibrillators in or near all schools in Wolverhampton.
Their drive to raise awareness, gain support, sponsorship and donations for equipment has been innovative and inspiring. They wrote letters to the Education Secretary and their local MP and spoke to a member of the House of Lords to get ideas on how to keep the momentum of the campaign going. They made a video, performed rap and drama, made posters and leaflets, arranged first aid training and created a hashtag #ssppthebeatgoeson to build their campaign.
The students have now raised money to buy equipment for their own school and continue to fundraise for their cause.
Teacher of the Year
Recognises teachers or educational leaders who have taught their students and colleagues about the UK Parliament in innovative, inspiring and engaging ways.
Courtney Dow, a teacher in Grove Academy Dundee, is keen to raise awareness about the work of UK Parliament and encourage young people to engage with politics and the democratic process.
She singlehandedly organised activities for all year groups in the school. She encouraged S1-S2 students to think about changes they wanted in their local community, and then use social media to share their views with their MP. S4-S6 students participated in workshops to understand and feel empowered to engage with UK Parliament. Furthermore, through a series of lessons, class debates and discussions, she got S3 students involved with the Petitions Committee Enquiry into Social Media Use and ID requirements. Her efforts had a positive impact on the students, they feel their voices can shape future decisions and laws that affect their lives.
They now want to be more involved in the democratic process - this enthusiasm has led to the school applying and being selected to work on the House of Lords Environment and Climate Change Committee: Mobilising action on climate change and environment project.
Ms Dow is a teacher who is passionate about creating opportunities to help students learn and grow and have an impact on democracy.
UKPW Activity of the Year
Recognises the work of those who made an outstanding contribution to UK Parliament Week.
Nexus Multi-Academy Trust (Nexus) comprises of ten individual schools. Their activity for UK Parliament Week (UKPW) involved many months of collaboration and planning. It was led by their UK Parliament Teacher Ambassador. Colleagues from across the trust in SEND, mainstream and specialist schools worked together to set up the event.
The intent was to use UKPW as the launch event to create a trust wide Pupil Parliament. Existing student councils became a House of Lords, each class acted as a constituency and elected a class MP. Taking part in UKPW helped shape students learning experience as they wrote manifestos, held class elections, counted votes, contacted their MPs and begin school-based campaigns.
UKPW at Nexus is much more than a week’s event. It is ongoing throughout the year, with the aim to ensure that children have a voice and enjoy the best possible learning experience.
Volunteer of the Year
Celebrates the amazing work of people who volunteered their time to get others involved with democracy and the UK Parliament.
Dev Sharma is a 17 year old student who passionately campaigns for all young people to have access to a good diet. He is the co-chair of Bite Back 2030, a youth led campaign for healthy eating.
During lockdown he noticed a lot more online adverts for junk food and takeaways and he wanted this to stop. He took action by writing to the Health Minister urging the government to make policy changes to ensure young people's health is not negatively affected by adverts promoting unhealthy foods.
Dev also launched an open letter calling for an end to this type of advertising and encouraged young people across the country to support it. The letter was hosted on BiteBack2030.com and was created using an algorithm so every time it was signed, it generated an email to the Health Secretary.
Following a successful campaign, in July 2021 the government announced new regulations, which will come into force at the end of 2023, to introduce a 9pm watershed for advertisements of foods high in fat, salt and sugar.
Petition Campaign of the Year Award
Celebrates the passion and determination of campaigners who have used petitions to bring important issues to Parliament’s attention, and to improve things for others.
Beckie Ramsay started her ‘Doing It for Dylan’ campaign to raise awareness of the risks associated with open bodies of water following the tragic death of her son Dylan by drowning in 2011.
During that time, Beckie has delivered sessions on water safety to over 180,000 school students, and her tireless campaigning was recognised in 2019 when she was awarded the British Empire Medal for ‘services to the Prevention of Water Related Accidents’.
Beckie’s campaign is calling on the Government to introduce classroom-based lessons on how to be safe around water, and is supported by the Royal National Lifeboat Institute, the National Water Safety Forum, and former Olympic swimmer Sharron Davies.
Partner Activity of the Year
Recognises a partner organisation that has engaged the public with democracy and the work of UK Parliament through a project, event, or development of a resource.
We at UK Parliament work with external organisations to help us engage people and communities with UK Parliament and democracy. We rely on the knowledge and expertise in every partner organisation to help make our work relevant, accessible and exciting to everyone.
The winner this year is Votes for Schools. They are a team of teachers passionate about engaging young people in democratic participation and ensuring that their voices are heard.
For UK Parliament Week 2021 they sent resources to 800+ schools and colleges on the topic, “Should you have to learn about politics in school?” reaching hundreds of thousands of young people and their teachers.
Almost 35,000 young people took part in an online vote following the classroom teaching and their thoughts and opinions have been collated in a report that was shared with other organisations and Members of Parliament.
Sign up for UK Parliament Week 2022