North American Manx Association Youth Awards 2021

Students who made an outstanding contribution to Manx culture last year have been recognised by the North American Manx Association (NAMA).

The North American Manx Awards honour the achievements of children and young people in areas such as language, music and the arts.

Roo Hyett, 14, and Sophia Taylor, 17, who both attend QEII were recognised for music and language respectively, and St John’s pupil Thomas McAleer was recognised for art. Ten-year-old Ben Cawtherley, an accomplished artist who attends Bunscoill Rhumsaa, was recognised for overcoming a disability to make a difference in his community.

All winners were presented with a specially minted silver medal by David Holmes – a life member of NAMA.

Dr Alex Allinson MHK, Minister for Education, Sport and Culture, said: ‘It has been a tough year for everyone and these awards are a great way to recognise the endeavours and exceptional talents of our young people and their contribution to our rich Manx culture.’ 

Laurence Skelly, MHK, Past President of NAMA, presented awards to Ballakermeen’s Izabela Garczynska and QE11’s Ealish Ayres for their progress with the Manx language. 

Minister Skelly, said: ‘Recognising our heritage and culture gives a sense of unity and belonging and after such a difficult year filled with challenges it is more important than ever we acknowledge the young people who have contributed so importantly.’

The awards have been run each year since 1978, when the convention of the North American Manx Association assembled at Rocky River, Ohio, and resolved to spend $1000 on a project to commemorate the Millennium of Tynwald in 1979.
 Outstanding achievement in Manx Music – Roo Hyett 
 Outstanding achievement in Manx Language – Sophia Taylor 
 Outstanding achievement in Manx Art and Crafts – Thomas McAleer 
 Outstanding contribution to Manx Culture (under 18) – Maeve Callister – Wafer
 Outstanding contribution to Manx Culture (by a group under the age of 25 – Share na Veg
 Outstanding contribution to the Manx Community – Amy Struthers 
 Outstanding contribution to the community by overcoming a disability – Ben Cawtherley 
 Most progress in Manx – Izabela Garczynska and Ealish Ayres