Issued: March 18, 2017
PICTURE: Epping Forest MP Eleanor Laing with Citizens of the Year Doreen and Sid Miller CLICK HERE
Epping Forest MP Eleanor Laing congratulates Epping Forest District Council's civic award winners
Epping Forest MP Eleanor Laing has congratulated the winners of Epping Forest District Council's Civic Awards.
The awards - recognising people across the district who "make a difference" - were presented by council chairman Jeane Lea at the Marriott Hotel, Waltham Abbey, on Friday evening.
Citizens of the Year Sid and Doreen Miller, from Epping, were recognised for their efforts to help hundreds of families find a place to live by providing crucial rent guarantees through the Epping Forest Housing Aid Scheme.
They also support many other organisations throughout the district including Epping Forest Community Transport and the furniture exchange.
Mrs Laing said: "I'm absolutely delighted that Doreen and Sid have been honoured in this way. They have been married for over 60 years. What a team.
"It's really nice that recognition should be given to people who have, in many ways over such a long time, assisted people when they need help."
* West Hatch High School student Arjun Kuhaendran - the school's Charity Ambassador - received the Young Citizen award.
His nomination described him as "selfless, caring and an inspiration to his fellow students and teachers".
In the past year alone he has organised various events and raffles for a wide range of causes including Crisis at Christmas, Water Aid and Macmillan Cancer Support.
His activities, which are supported by fellow students, have included cake sales (for Macmillan Cancer Support), a car wash (for Water Aid) and a dance for International Day of Peace.
His nomination added: "He is a shining example of how significant changes can be made by those that are bold enough, in a short time and his teachers say he has made charitable activity ‘cool’."
Mrs Laing said: "I congratulate Arjun who has done so much good work for his school and through his support of a wide variety of good causes."
* Mrs Laing also congratulated David Castleman, 14, who saved the life of a drowning man who found himself in difficulties as he swam off the Norfolk coast.
David, a student at Epping St Johns School, was presented with a Special Chairman's Commendation award.
Mrs Laing said: "I was delighted to meet David whose actions were truly magnificent. To put your own life on the line to save someone else's is truly heroic.
"Most of us fortunately have never been in that position but to save a life at the age of only 14 is amazing."