Sophie Livingstone, City Year UK’s chief executive, was given the Mayor’s Fund for London Award for individual achievement last night at City Hall.
The Awards celebrate individuals, organisations and schools making a positive impact on the social mobility of young Londoners from disadvantaged backgrounds.
The Mayor’s Fund for London – Individual Award was chosen by the judging panel from all entries. In order to qualify, the recipient had to demonstrate outstanding achievement and lasting impact in tackling the skills and employment agenda for young Londoners from disadvantaged backgrounds, covering criteria including raising awareness of opportunities, making the most of and maximising potential and working towards a sustainable career.
Sophie said of her win: “I was delighted to be nominated and then shortlisted among so many other hugely influential and inspirational people and organisations. Winning the overall individual award was a huge surprise and honour – I’m still in shock!
“It’s particularly special to have been nominated by Zipporah, who has been on this journey with me from the beginning, since joining as a volunteer in 2010. It has been a joy to watch her develop over the years and I’m incredibly touched that she put me forward for this award.
“Every day I work with inspiring people at City Year UK, from staff to our volunteers, who are all dedicated to helping others and giving back to their communities. I’m proud that between us all we’ve made a difference to 50,000 children’s lives since founding in 2010 and I hope we can go on to support many many more.”
Zipporah Kissi, an alumna of City Year London’s first programme in 2010 and now Careers and Progression Manager at City Year UK, who nominated Ms Livingstone for the award, said:
“Sophie has been an inspiration to me since I joined City Year UK in its very first year as a volunteer, helping to address educational inequality in London.
“She always has an open-door policy, balancing management with dedicating time to young people and staff. She’s a constant source of motivation and guidance, and working alongside her has been truly inspiring. I’m really pleased that she’s been recognised through this award.”
The judging panel highlighted the personal nature of Zipporah’s nomination and noted that Sophie Livingstone had been responsible for the founding and growth of the organisation to a nearly £5m organisation since inception.