A TEENAGER from Didcot has been honoured with the British Citizen Youth Award for his fundraising efforts after losing his friend to mental health.

Daniel Lloyd, 15, from Didcot has been presented with the Certificate of Honour at the Palace of Westminster for his charity work.

The teenager took a tragic situation and used his grief to support others and address mental health taboo's.

Following the loss of one of his best friends in March 2019, Daniel wanted to raise money in his friend’s memory and support the hospital who had cared for him.

In May, Daniel completed a 5k obstacle colour run raising more than £430 for the psychiatric intensive care unit (PICU) at the John Radcliffe Hospital in Oxford.

Oxford Mail: Daniel LLoyd at the British Citizen Youth Awards.

This tragic event had a great impact on Daniel and inspired him to want to raise awareness for youth mental health and help support other students in St Birinus School.

He felt there needed to be a better understanding of mental health and decided to raise money to enable his school to train two members of staff in mental health first aid.

Daniel also spent his summer baking and selling cakes and holding a raffle raising more than £1,500 for his school. The St Birinus School said it will use the money to bring someone into school to train 16 members of staff in mental health first aid.

In January 2020, Daniel started Markers for Mindfulness, an initiative to bring school basics to primary schools who are struggling with funding cuts and to help raise awareness for mental health in students.

By providing schools with some basics, pens, pencils, whiteboard markers, he hoped it might help free up a small part of their budget which can then be used in other areas to support students who need it.

Oxford Mail: British Citizen Youth Awards 2020 group.

The British Citizen Youth Award in association with Specsavers is now in its fifth year and recognises exceptional under 18’s who have positively impacted their communities through the county.

Dame Mary Perkins said: “The British Citizen Youth Award recipients are very special individuals. These young people all go above and beyond for others with selfless acts of kindness and community spirit with no thought or expectation of praise or reward. These awards are a great opportunity to shine a light on what they do and give them the recognition they so thoroughly deserve. They are the nation's true unsung heroes and the rising stars of the future.”

25 young people from across the UK have been recognised with The British Citizen Youth Award, BCYA on the 2020 Roll of Honour.

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