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.

'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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Fundraising for YOPEY made easy

YOPEY has paid to register with Virgin Money Giving. This is just like JustGiving only cheaper for us and passes every penny of your fundraising – and GiftAid where appropriate – direct to YOPEY.

Anyone can set up their page in aid of YOPEY by clicking here although we would love to hear what you plan to do and may be able to help. So why not email us first with your idea by clicking by emailing

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The YOPEYs in five minutes! 

Ideal to show in school assemblies, this short film is about the kinds of young positive role models that YOPEY promotes and how to nominate.

Get the Flash Player to see this player.

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Your school's sixth-form could put on YOPEY awards...

Your school could help YOPEY to put on an awards ceremony. In the film below about 30 sixth-formers from Ely College, the local comprehensive in the town of the same name, put on the Cambridgeshire YOPEYs at Ely Cathedral... Left you can read letters of thanks from a couple of other schools to put on YOPEY awards. We have many more such references and nowadays YOPEY founder Tony Gearing gives a personal reference to every young person who helps to put on an awards ceremony.

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Honorary YOPEYs reach parts others don’t

At Young People of the Year we never cease to be amazed at the marvellous ‘giving to others’ that young people in the UK do. They commit themselves without seeking recognition or reward, but YOPEY believes in ‘revealing, recognising and rewarding’ these unsung heroes.

Unfortunately, YOPEY competitions do not take part across the whole of the country (yet!) so some amazing young people still miss out on getting the praise they deserve. But not any more…

YOPEY has decided to create a special category of Honorary YOPEY

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YOPEY Befriender wins top £25,000 award from Aviva

The YOPEY charity won the biggest prize of £25,000 in a national funding competition and is now looking for partners to help expand its befriending scheme between schools and care homes to Norfolk and Suffolk.

YOPEY Befriender came top out of over 3,000 good causes nationwide in the Aviva Community Fund challenge to get enough votes to be put into the final and then be judged by a panel of the insurer’s staff.

“It was a bit like ‘Britain’s Got Talent’ and I was the performer,” said the

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© YOPEY registered with the Charity Commission of England and Wales as charity number 1145573
Registered with the Registrar of Companies for England and Wales as company number 7751145

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