DUMBFOUNDED Dawn McManus admitted she was “rendered speechless” after being nominated for a prestigious title.
The founder of the Hartlepool-based charity Red Dreams is in the running in the community champion section of the Pride of Hartlepool awards.
Ian and Dawn McManus founded Red Dreams after the tragic death of 16-year-old son Kyle McManus, who passed away in 2007 after suffering a sudden brain haemorrhage.
It aims to give opportunities to creative youngsters like Kyle by providing resources and a stage for their talent.
Ian, 43, put in the nomination for Dawn and said: “She never thinks of herself first, it is all about the young and more mature people who are part of the Red Dreams Family.”
He said Dawn, 42, has illnesses including osteoarthritis and also has to handle the “emotional pain she feels daily from the loss of her only child.”
But he added: “She is determined to make the lives of the people she works with better...and her behaviour breeds the same behaviour in others.
“I have seen young people grow into amazing young adults, moving into further or higher education or taking jobs, that they may never have applied for if it wasn’t for Dawn.
“And yet she never asks for anything in return, just that the people around her are okay and that they give their strength and support to people in their lives who may need it.
“She is my strength, my hero and my champion.”
Dawn said: “I still get embarrassed when people say nice things and it is not often I am rendered speechless.
“Seeing young people progress and grow is what we do this for. It is what we would have done for Kyle and what we now do for everyone else.”
We are calling on our readers to nominate that special person or people who have done something that you believe deserves recognition.
You have until early March to put forward your favourites and we want to make this a record year for entry numbers – but the only way we can do that is with your help.
So come on. Fill in the nomination form in the Hartlepool Mail today, or visit www.hartlepool.mail.co.uk and complete the online entry form.