Last week, Jewish Care celebrated the inspiring work of young leaders at the MIKE Awards 2021. Participants in Jewish Care’s MIKE youth leadership programme, which stands for Motivation, Inspiration, Knowledge and Education, were delighted to be back together again at the awards evening which praised the commitment and dedication to leadership and volunteering of more than 90 young people connected with Jewish Care in Redbridge. The participants also kicked off Jewish Care’s Go Purple week in support of the work the organisation does to support the community, proudly wearing their purple Jewish Care T-shirts.
The MIKE programme empowers young people to become youth leaders, learning leadership skills from their peers and as they move through the stages of the programme, becoming educators themselves. The young leaders develop in the programme through training which has taken place online since the start of the Covid-19 pandemic, and by helping to run after school clubs for primary school age children at Clore Tikva School.
The evening on Wednesday 13 October was held at Kantor King Solomon High School this year and was hosted by Jamie Shone, who has been through the MIKE programme as a participant, volunteer and leader. Jamie was awarded the Saul Keene Award for Excellence in 2020 for his incredible commitment to the MIKE programme and his kindness and dedication in supporting to older members of the community through the Covid-19 pandemic by delivering Meals on Wheels, and Jamie now leads the youth team.
Jonathan Zenios, Chair of Jewish Care, who attended the evening, said, “It’s truly inspiring to be here with the MIKE youth leaders. You give so much to Jewish Care and you do it over and over again. It’s a great reminder that as much as our community depend on Jewish Care, we are only able to be here because of the commitment from our volunteers and the community.
“On behalf of Jewish Care, I would like to thank everyone who has helped to support us this evening and throughout the year to make this a fantastic programme, including Nicky Goldman, CEO of JVN who has shared inspiring words with us as our keynote speaker and Kantor King Solomon School for providing the venue for the MIKE Awards.”
This year, the recipient of the prestigious Saul Keene Award for Excellence in Youth Leadership this year was awarded to Jacob Landsman. Nettie Keene presented the award
in memory of her son, Saul Keene, who sadly passed away in 2008 at the age of 4. This year she gave the award together with Gayle Klein, Jewish Care Trustee and also a former participant of the MIKE programme.
Gayle said, “I grew up at Redbridge club and was a close friend of Saul, so it is a real honour to be involved in giving this award to honour the legacy of youth leadership that he left behind. Saul was a very special friend of Redbridge. He was an incredible volunteer, youth leader and dedicated to his community. Being a youth leader was an integral part of his life for many years and he was truly unique and inspirational.”
In nominating Jacob for his award, the youth team said, “Even during this past difficult year in the pandemic, Jacob always has a smile and has sought to develop his skills and make an impact. His positivity makes him a fantastic role model, overcoming the challenges we’ve faced along the way triumphantly, since the start of this year’s programme. He is a great role model to his peers and the community.”
After receiving the award, Jacob said, who is now studying at Lincoln University and attended the evening, said, “I’ve been coming along to Jewish Care’s MIKE programme for five years and I’ve loved every single minute of it. I’d like to thank my co-workers because I couldn’t have done it without them and over the last year our MIKE programme online programme has been the highlight of my week.”
Jane Parmenter, Grants Officer at the Jack Petchey Foundation, presented the Jack Petchey Achievement Awards, supporting young people to have the opportunity to develop their potential and to be recognised for the positive things they achieve. This year’s recipients were Rebecca Lloyd, Scott Silver, Ben Sivan and Maor Aharon.
After being presented with her Jack Petchey Award, Rebecca Lloyd, said, “I’ve had so many opportunities with the MIKE programme that have shaped me as the leader I am today. After learning leadership skills I’m able to talk to people of ages. I’ve learned to adapt to different situations, and it has really developed my confidence so I am able to stand up here and talk to you all today.”
Jewish Care’s Director of Community Development, Richard Shone added, “We are confident that these young people will be the future leaders of our community. Their commitment to motivation, inspiration, knowledge and education brings a much-needed vitality and provides strong foundations for their increased involvement. A huge congratulations goes to all of the graduates and all connected to the running of the MIKE programme, the Jack Petchey Award
winners and of course, Jacob Landsman who is the deserving recipient of the prestigious Saul Keene Award for Excellence in Youth Leadership.”