Women’s Aid ABCLN peer mentor wins “Community & Volunteering Award 2014” at the Ballymena Youth Awards.

4 April, 2014


04 April 2014

For immediate release

Women’s Aid ABCLN peer mentor wins “Community & Volunteering Award 2014” at the Ballymena Youth Awards.

Volunteer Coordinator, Laura Dillon and peer mentor, Michelle Skelly attended the Braid in Ballymena on Monday 31st March for the Ballymena Youth Star Awards.  

Michelle was nominated for an award for her continuous dedication and commitment to Women’s Aid ABCLN and the many projects she has been involved in over the last 2 years. Michelle participated in Women’s Aid ABCLN “Young Voices” group, a group of young people who meet once a week to discuss teenage issues and is a forum for young people to express their views (the “Voice” of young people). Last year Michelle completed her OCN in Domestic Violence Awareness through the Voices group.

Michelle was involved with the recruitment and selection process for the “Make it Better” team in 2012. The “Make it Better” team is funded through the Big Lottery (empowering young people) and aims to support children and young people who are living with domestic violence. Michelle participated in the interview panel and her opinions were pivotal and respected in the selection process.

The “Make it Better” team facilitate a Homework Support Club for children which aims to provide support and remove barriers to learning by providing a safe structured and supportive learning environment. Michelle has recently committed to the role of peer mentor to help the children and young people with their homework.

In 2013, Michelle also played a key part in producing the DVD: Family Portrait - Voice of a Victim in order to raise awareness of Domestic Violence ( funded by the PSNI and YJA). Michelle took part in a Residential at Todd’s Leap in Omagh (along with staff members and PSNI representatives) in order to develop the DVD where Michelle suggested ideas for the DVD production and suggestions for the script. Her contribution was invaluable and she committed to several dates over the summer as she acted a lead role in the DVD. The DVD was officially official launch in December 2013 and was attended by Chief Constable Matt Baggett and Justice Minister David Ford.

Overall, Michelle’s contribution has made a positive difference to the organisation. Women’s Aid has benefited from her relentless dedication and time, and the young people who use the services have also benefitted from Michelle’s dedication to the Homework Support Club. 

Laura Dillon, Volunteer Coordinator said: “Michelle is an inspiration to other young people using the service and is an asset to Women’s Aid ABCLN. We are all very proud of her and this award is very well deserved”.

If you are interested in Volunteering with Women’s Aid ABCLN please contact Laura, Volunteer Coordinator on 07568106373 or alternatively email laura.dillon@womensaidabcln.org.

Anyone experiencing domestic violence can also access support by calling the 24hr Domestic & Sexual Violence Helpline on 0808 802 1414
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For further information contact Laura Dillon, Women’s Aid ABCLN or email:

Laura Dillon laura.dillon@womensaidabcln.org