The strength and solidarity of Middlesbrough's diverse communities during the Covid-19 pandemic has been recognised at a celebratory awards event.
Middlesbrough Council's Covid Champions have been acknowledged alongside the town's Primary Care Network of GP surgeries for their combined efforts in response to the virus.
The two groups won the public sector gong at the Tees Valley BME Achievement Awards.
The Covid Champions network is made up of individuals and organisations who are playing a key role in getting vital information to those who need it most.
Influential voices and established groups linked to mosques, community groups and charities have worked alongside GPs to promote and deliver vaccination pop-up clinics.
South Tees Joint Director of Public Health Mark Adams said: "This is deserved recognition for a network that is doing so much important work.
"Throughout the pandemic they've helped the Council and partners get vital information out there, helped us to understand and respond to issues in communities and build understanding that has helped to keep people, their families and communities safe.
"The people and groups involved are at the heart of their communities and will continue to help us protect people around Middlesbrough this winter.
"It's clear how important the vaccination programme is going to be over the coming months and our Covid Champions will use their voices and networks to help the NHS continue its brilliant work."
Dr Vaishali Nanda, Central Middlesbrough PCN Clinical Director and GP at The Discovery Practice Middlesbrough, said, "We are extremely honoured to receive the Public Sector award.
"The award recognises the continued effort we have made during the pandemic and our commitment to reducing health inequalities across our BME community."
Middlesbrough Mayor Andy Preston said: "The BME Achievement Awards were truly inspirational. I had a great time listening to the stories of those who do so much to make Middlesbrough a great place to live.
"The Covid Champions network is doing incredibly important work and has teamed up brilliantly with the NHS on the vaccine effort."
The awards were held at Middlesbrough's Jury's Inn.
For more information on Covid Champions visit the Covid Champions page.