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Citizen of the Year

A tireless community stalwart has been awarded one of Middlesbrough’s top honours.

Cheryl Dixon has been named Middlesbrough Citizen of the Year 2017 for the selfless contribution she makes to her North Ormesby community.

She received her award from Middlesbrough Mayor Dave Budd at a special ceremony at North Ormesby Hub attended by friends and family and members of the local community.

Cheryl’s accolade follows a nomination by Kader ward Councillor Ron Arundale who said he had been ‘bowled over’ by her work in the community.

The winner is chosen by a panel of judges drawn from across Middlesbrough’s public and private sectors.

Cheryl is Vice Chair of the North Ormesby Big Local and chairs its Environment Theme Group, and does a lot of work with gardening and local environment initiatives in the area.

She runs a parent and toddler group at the Community Hub, supporting parents and children in their dealings with schools, the Council and others, as well as helping out with local food banks and countless community events.

Cllr Arundale said: “I feel the whole community has benefited from Cheryl’s outstanding work, and she is a wonderful asset to the people of North Ormesby.

“I cannot imagine anyone more deserving of this award.”

Speaking after the ceremony, Cheryl said: “To receive this award was quite a shock, and to me it just shows the importance of community work.

“With services and budgets being cut, it’s vital that we pull local communities back together and help people change their own lives for the better.

“It’s all about identifying areas where we can help to bridge the gap between the harder to reach communities and the services and agencies that are there to help.

“This award is a thank you to everybody that supports the work I do, and to the families who believe in it and keep coming back each week.”

Middlesbrough Mayor Dave Budd said: “The Middlesbrough Citizen of the Year Award is an annual celebration of good citizenship and public service, and it’s hard to think of anyone who meets those criteria better than Cheryl.

“This accolade is all about recognising a community hero who makes a real difference to life in Middlesbrough and Cheryl does that week in, week out.

“She is a worthy winner of this year’s award, and the people of North Ormesby are lucky to have her as a member of their community.”