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19/09/2021

Final call to find Derry's Supervalu Superstars - hurry up and nominate your special someone

People throughout Derry are being given one final chance to nominate their local heroes as part of a major campaign to uncover our most inspirational individuals. The SuperValu SuperStars initiative wants to hear about those who have gone beyond the call of duty to help people and communities in need. Building on the success of last year’s event, SuperValu has introduced new categories to help capture the good work done across the whole spectrum of Northern Ireland society. Last year Derry man, Nathaniel Hunter was named joint second place whilst teenager, Jamie Harkin, took the joint third place, both winning SuperValu shopping vouchers and a framed certificate. Nathaniel was awarded for his quick thinking and reactions when a pleasant stroll along the beach turned into a rescue drama for himself and his wife when they realised three children, aged 10, 11 and 12, had been swept out to sea. The coastguard had already been alerted and were on their way, but Nathaniel knew there was no time to lose, dashed to get a buoyancy aid and raced into the water, swimming out to the terrified kids. Another young man followed and brought the closest child to safety whist Nathaniel swam on, getting hold of one youngster and throwing the aid to another. A strong swimmer, he brought them both back to the beach were they were treated in hospital but lived to tell the tale. Nathaniel was praised by the coastguard and of course the families of the young lives he saved that day. Jamie also from Derry, had a story of extreme courage and kindness in the most challenging of circumstances. Poignantly, this exceptional young man was nominated by his mum Trisha, who had recently passed away but the family took the tough decision to proceed with the SuperStars nomination in their mother’s honour. Seven years previously Jamie was diagnosed with blood cancer Hodgkin’s Lymphoma. His late mum told of how, before, during and after an unsuccessful organ transplant Jamie never complained. He went on to set up a wonderful support group called Jamie’s Journey in a bid to give hope to other young people touched by cancer. During his exams, the brave young man, whilst taking regular hits of morphine due to the pain, battled on and gained 10As and A*s in his GCSEs. Like many, the inspiring young man is a Star Wars fan, and after winning every fan’s dream prize of a custom light sabre, he selflessly raffled it to raise funds for charity. Due to popular demand, the deadline for entries has been extended by two weeks to Friday 14th September. Stephen Bogle, SuperValu Brand Manager, said: “With entries flooding in from right across Northern Ireland, we are one step closer to finding this year’s SuperValu SuperStars. The level of interest has been fantastic and we’re giving people one final chance to nominate the people they feel deserve their moment in the spotlight and the cash prize. “We have introduced new categories this year which are, ‘Young SuperStar’, ‘Fundraising SuperStar’, ‘Unsung SuperStar’, ‘Community Group SuperStar’, ‘Social Enterprise SuperStar’, ‘SuperValu Action Cancer SuperStar’ and the ‘Overall SuperValu SuperStar 2018’. “So, as well as identifying kids and adults who have done something remarkable or selfless we are rewarding the work done by people in the social enterprise sector, in community groups and we have introduced a special award for SuperValu colleagues who work tirelessly all year raising funds for Action Cancer.” Finalists will attend a prestigious ceremony in Titanic Hotel on November 22nd, hosted by TV personality, Pamela Ballantine, and each will receive SuperValu vouchers. The overall SuperValu SuperStar will walk away with £1000 for themselves and a £1000 donation to a registered charity of their choice. Judge and host of SuperValu SuperStars, Pamela Ballantine, said: “I'm thrilled to be part of this amazing initiative which rewards those who are doing good in communities right across Northern Ireland. There is a lot of incredible work being done by individuals who work at social enterprise companies and community groups, as well as adults and kids, that goes completely unrewarded. We hope to shine a light on just some of these people and I can’t wait to meet all of our finalists on November 22 in the Titanic Hotel.” Stephen Bogle, continued; “Often in our society people don’t get the recognition they deserve; SuperValu SuperStars will celebrate the contribution real life SuperStars make in our communities. Through this exciting initiative, we are proud to provide a platform to honour people and their organisations whose selflessness, commitment and determination make this such a great place to live. “We’re calling on everyone to get involved - if your friend, teacher, nurse, family member, neighbour, work colleague or someone in your community deserves recognition, this is your chance to give them their moment in the spotlight.” It’s easy to nominate your SuperValu SuperStar – just log onto www.supervalu.co.uk and fill in the nomination form. SuperValu SuperStars media partners are The Sun and U105 and is sponsored by Denny, Action Cancer, Robinsons and Dove. For further information and to nominate your local SuperStar, visit www.supervalu.co.uk. Entries close on 14th September 2018. Pictured above: SuperValu Brand Manager, Stephen Bogle and TV personality, Pamela Ballantine, call on people to nominate their local heroes to be recognised as one of Northern Ireland’s SuperValu SuperStars.

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