Young People of the Year

Revealing, Recognising and Rewarding Positive Role Models

Welcome to... Young People of the Year awards or YOPEYs Oscars for young people who give to others! ... Follow links to Nominate young people you know who are Positive Role Models. We also run YOPEY Befriender where young people are trained to befriend elderly people. Read more below...

• Young People of the Year or 'YOPEY' is a campaign to give young people a fairer image in the media – and society as a whole – by 'revealing, recognising and rewarding' young unsung heroes and setting them up as positive role models for other young people to copy.
• By doing this YOPEY improves relations between the generations, including reducing the elderly's fear of teenagers.
• National leaders praise YOPEY. You can read endorsements from Prime Ministers on this page. To see endorsements by UK leaders click on Next Page at the bottom of this page.
• YOPEY is mainly supported by commercial companies as part of their Corporate Social Responsibility. But it can also promote your business. YOPEY can train staff volunteers to give presentations on good citizenship. 
• Sponsors range from FTSE100 companies to SMEs. You can see all of them on our Thanks pages. We also receive support from public services, such as police and councils, and charitable trusts.
• YOPEY also runs Befriender schemes where young people befriend elderly people in care homes, often living with dementia.
• Together with all these people YOPEY is 'Creating Tomorrow's Great Citizens Today'.

• We have stopped using an 0845 number, but this remains on older sections of this website, which are unaltered records of YOPEYs at that time. Please call YOPEY on 01440 821654.

YOPEY nominator wins a royal award

Sometimes it is not just entrants in YOPEY competitions who make the headlines for their good deeds it is those associated with them as well.

Take the case of Marcellus Baz who nominated young boxer Dwayne Cooke-Peccoo who made it to the finals of the Nottinghamshire competition in 2014.

Marcellus, who was into gang culture as a young man,  turned to boxing as a detraction from bad ways and then used the sport as a way of keeping youngsters out of crime.

Dwayne went to the Nottingham School of Boxing, run by Marcellus, who discovered

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Education Secretary supports YOPEY

Justine Greening MP, the new Education Secretary in Theresa May's Government, has attended and judged two London Young People of the Year awards. 

Here she writes a letter of support to YOPEY Founder Tony Gearing.

To read the letter in full click on the album to the left...

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Watch our first film specifically about YOPEY Befriender and the young people who volunteer to befriend lonely residents in care homes. Click on the film immediately below...

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Care trade press publicises YOPEY Befriender

Several publications in the media that serves the care home industry have published articles about YOPEY Befriender.

The Caring Times magazine gave YOPEY Befriender its front cover and ran a full-page feature inside. Care Home Management magazine ran a three-page feature.

Other care home trade press have published articles on their websites and in emails to subscribers.

YOPEY founder Tony Gearing and three teenage YOPEY Befrienders gave a presentation at the Care & Demenita Show at the NEC in October 2016 and this led to more publicity.

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Younger age group trail blazed new YOPEY Befriender scheme

More than 20 14 to 15-year-olds from two schools blazed a trail as the youngest YOPEY Befrienders so far on a new befriending scheme in their town.

The year 10 pupils from County Upper and St Benedict’s in Bury St Edmunds, Suffolk, regularly visited elderly people with dementia at a care home in the town centre.

The scheme was run by the charity YOPEY, which stands for Young People of the Year and is based in the village of Stradishall near Bury St Edmunds. The charity wants to expand its ‘YOPEY Befriender’

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'Northern HQ' shuts with Kevin's retirement

Freelance journalist Kevin Palmer who launched many young people on the road to YOPEY success by researching and writing their stories is packing away his notebook and saying a fond farewell.

Kevin, who has been working with YOPEY since a year after it was founded, has been a vital member of the YOPEY team and the voice that nominators and nominees heard first when entries' case studies were being written up.

He has written around 630 case studies of entrants over nine years which have been used as stories in local newspapers

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Bridging the generation gap

Teenagers make elderly friends – many with dementia

Photographs by Catherine Humphries, John Flynn and Tony Middleton

Teenager Kaylee Poloczek has a new ‘bezzy mate’ – 82-year-old Roy who she says ‘has done some cool stuff in his life’.

The 18-year-old met Roy at an old people’s day centre while taking part in a pioneering project uniting young and old people in friendship to help combat loneliness and isolation. 


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Take luxury holidays at discounted prices – and support YOPEY

Holidays at luxury holiday homes in France and Spain have been donated to be sold in aid of YOPEY the charity.

To view the Le Verger de Pommiers in Normandy with its 7 bedrooms and heated outdoor pool click here. This beautiful house normally sells for up to £1795 per week but we are offering it for £1095 per week and £995 x 2 if you take two weeks.

To view Casa La Celada in Andalucia

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More UK leaders endorse YOPEY...

The new leaders of the Labour Party and Liberal-Democrats have praised YOPEY.

Jeremy Corbyn, whose was elected to lead the Labour Party by a lot of young people, said about YOPEY: "I'd like to thank everyone involved for their dedication to their communities. The work you are undertaking locally is incredibly valuable. Thank you once again for all of the work you do."

Jeremy's predecessor Ed Miliband praised YOPEY when he was Opposition leader and even found time to judge the first London YOPEYs.

Tim Farron,

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