During lockdown Max Terris, 21, has helped raise more than £2,000 for young carers across Wearside
A kind-hearted fundraiser has received an award from police after his selfless gesture to reward carers across Wearside.
Max Terris, 21, attends Sunderland-based Springboard Futures which provides education and training to young adults with autism, disabilities or additional needs.
The Southwick centre was forced to temporarily close in March due to Covid-19, so in order to keep Max focused and active during lockdown, his family pledged to sponsor him £1 for every day he completed a walk.
But rather than keep the money for himself, caring Max decided he wanted to help fund a celebration event for young carers who have been working tirelessly throughout the pandemic. The event will hopefully be held in 2021.
Now, after Max’s family, friends and local businesses helped him raise more than £2,700 for Sunderland Carers Centre, police have presented the inspirational student with a ‘Community Hero’ award in recognition of his kindness.
Max is the first recipient of the new Wearside award which police will give out each month to a person who has shown outstanding kindness, inspiration or positivity in the community.
PC Louise Turnbull works in the north of the city – including the communities of Southwick, Fulwell and Roker – and came up with the idea.
She said: “Max is an incredibly positive and kind young man who we have got to know through our close work with Springboard Futures.
“I know 2020 has been a difficult year for so many within our communities as we all try to do our bit to tackle the pandemic, including for Max who is such a social person whose routine has been significantly halted.
“Max’s family wanted to make sure he kept positive during lockdown and gave strength to others – so after hearing about his amazing fundraising efforts to reward carers across our city, I wanted to do something for him as a gesture of thanks.
“I’m delighted to name Max as the first winner of our ‘Community Hero’ award, which we will be running across the north of Sunderland to recognise the amazing achievements of people in our communities who have been incredibly positive, helpful or inspirational in these difficult times.
“There wasn’t a dry eye when I presented him with his certificate – he should be very proud of himself”.
Sunderland Carers Centre chief executive Amanda Brown thanked Max for his amazing efforts – as well as patron Paul Mackings, of Cameron Hall Developments, who heard about his fundraising efforts and himself pledged £1,000 to the cause.
Amanda said: “Max is a wonderful inspiration to our team and his kind nature always shines through whenever we meet.
“This has been such a lovely thing to do and with Paul’s very generous support we will be able to work with Max and young carers to plan a really special event. We are exceptionally grateful to them both.”
PC Turnbull has launched the ‘Community Hero’ award which will be handed out each month in recognition of outstanding people across the north of Sunderland who have gone above and beyond.
It can recognise individuals who have shown an exceptional act of kindness, had a special personal achievement or anything in between.
She will also be working with local schools, youth groups and organisations to ensure deserving people are rightly put forward for recognition.
If you know someone who is a hero in your community, please email email@example.com a brief summary of why they should be considered.