Sleaford Town Awards 2019 - Overcoming Adversity Award shortlisted nominees

Keira Beeson. EMN-190503-153129001
Keira Beeson. EMN-190503-153129001

Here we outline our shortlisted nominees for the Overcoming Adversity Award in the Sleaford Town Awards 2019. Judging will take place next month.

Keira Beeson

Tom Hicks. EMN-190503-153551001

Tom Hicks. EMN-190503-153551001

Sleaford teenager Keira Beeson is one of our shortlisted nominees for the Overcoming Adversity award.

She has endured four and a half months isolated in a hospital room due to complications with surgery, but finally returned home last month.

Keira had been critically ill with sepsis after undergoing the procedure to adjust her stoma last autumn, related to her ulcerative colitis - an inflammatory bowel disease.

She has raised funds and awareness for inflammatory bowel disease charities, but the usually stoical teen was understandably downhearted at the isolation, until mum Shelley thought of appealing on Facebook for well-wishers to send her Christmas cards and was answered with hundreds.

Ivy Mitchell. EMN-190503-153630001

Ivy Mitchell. EMN-190503-153630001

Keira’s symptoms can include stomach pain, fatigue, blood loss, weight loss and diarrhoea. Shekept up with her studies via the hospital tutor and aimed to return to school.

Ivy Mitchell

Sleaford Youngster Ivy Mitchell has been nominated for the Overcoming Adversity Award as she continually astounds her teachers and classmates at William Alvey School.

The Year 2 student makes progress with a positive outlook despite being born with Di George’s Syndrome (22 Q deletion).

This a rare genetic disorder which includes heart and breathing difficulties, learning difficulties, a cleft palate and other complications.

Ivy has already undergone several major heart operations to cope with the condition, on one occasion suffering kidney failure but recovering.

She can only attend school part time due to infection risk and requires a tracheostomy to breathe, but Ivy helped organise a non-uniform day for the MAX Appeal which supports families with children with DiGeorge’s syndrome.

Tom Hicks

Tom Hicks is a young Sleaford man who was affected by his uncle’s suicide at a young age but has been striving to help others contemplating the same fate.

Tom raised £320 and greater awareness through a 24 hour gaming and chat marathon online to support the Campaign Against Living Miserably charity which provides a helpline to help prevent male suicide in the UK, particularly in under 45 year olds, who seem most vulnerable.

Tom, who has had to overcome his own period of depression and anxiety, is a support worker for adults with learning disabiilties.

He said: “I want people to know that they can take that first step forward and ask for help whether that’s to family or friends and even charities that are out there.”