IN A room full of VIPs, charity campaigners and seasoned activists, a nine-year-old girl and a 12-year-boy stole the show.

Heather Bryson and Che Gallagher brought the house down at the Grand Final of Glasgow’s Community Champions Awards, organised by the Glasgow Times in association with Glasgow City Council, Glasgow Housing Association and Trades House Glasgow.

Glasgow Times: Glasgow Times Community Champion Awards 2021, City Chambers, Glasgow. Winner of the individual award is Heather Bryson age 9 - Lockdown Crafts By H. and Lockdown Exercise By H. Pictured talking with host Michelle McManus...Photograph by Colin Mearns.1

Heather, from Robroyston, won the Individual category for her inspirational work supporting people with dementia during lockdown.

“My gran passed away not that long ago,” she told event host Michelle McManus as she accepted her award. “When she lived in the care home, she did chair exercises and I wanted to help her and the other people there, so I did videos and made crafts. I have raised £1000 for Alzheimer Scotland.”

Glasgow Times: Glasgow Times Community Champion Awards 2021, City Chambers, Glasgow. Winner of the Individual Award North Heather Bryson - Lockdown Crafts By H. and Lockdown Exercise By H. - Winner. She is pictured with mum Deborah and dad Gary....Photograph by

Proud mum and dad Deborah and Gary were over the moon.

“Heather did all of this just to help and the response has been amazing,” said Deborah.

Gary added: “For her to be recognised here in her home town, in this amazing building at this event, is overwhelming.”

Che, from Crookston, has raised a whopping £30,000 for Children’s Hospice Association Scotland and other good causes across the country since the death of his older brother in 2017. He won the Young category, to the delight of proud mum Michelle and nan Katie.

“The hospice helps lots of kids, and I just like helping people,” he said to roof-raising cheers from the audience at the City Chambers Banqueting Hall.

Michelle said: “We are all so proud of Che. He doesn’t think he’s done anything special, but we all know he has.”

Nine awards were presented on the night, including the Lord Provost’s Special Recognition Award which went to Glasgow Baby Food Bank, who also triumphed in the Public Service category.

READ MORE: Glasgow Baby Food Bank double winners as Community Champions winners revealed

The Team Award went to PEEK (Possibilities for Each and Every Kid) who were relentless in their support of communities in the north east and beyond during the pandemic. Between March 2020 and March 2021, the charity supported more than 3500 children and young people and delivered an incredible 350,000 meals in their new food truck delivery service.

Accepting the award, Monica McDougall and Brian Innes said they were “so chuffed” to win.

“We want to help our community as much as we can, so we’ll keep doing what we’re doing,” said Brian.

Glasgow Times: Glasgow Times Community Champion Awards 2021, City Chambers, Glasgow. Photograph by Colin Mearns.

The Uniformed Services Award went to Glasgow’s Quit Your Way teams, which offer week to week support to those who find it hardest to stop smoking.

The Sports Award was presented to JKS Glasgow, a karate club whose support for its community and its dedication to run sessions for all ages and abilities have been second to none. During lockdown, owner Seon McLaren organised regular video chats, wellbeing workshops and more.

Seon, who had the whole room trying out karate exercises, said: “I’ve been training for 24 years and wanted to give something back to my community. Winning tonight means everything, I’m overwhelmed.”

The School award was presented to FARE Community Allotment Schools’ Plots, a group of six schools which helped turn an Easterhouse plot into a fantastic community hub. St. Paul’s Primary Shettleston received a commendation in this category for its inspirational Plot To Plate Project.

Hubert Rudniki, one of the young gardeners at the Easterhouse FARE allotments, who is a pupil at Lochend Community High School, said: “We are all very proud of what we have achieved.”

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The Health and Wellbeing award went to North Glasgow Community Food Initiative, a charity which runs a variety of inspirational ‘food hub’ activities including a community-led pantry, community meals and gardens and regular cooking and gardening classes. In this category, East End Empowering Stars, a charity which supports young people and the elderly received a commendation.

Leila Eddakille, of NGCFI, said: “No-one in this room does what they do to win awards but it is really lovely to be recognised, we are all over the moon and can’t wait to go back to thank all the staff and volunteers for everything they do.”