Dedicated mum in line for a top award

Charlene Twidale with a selection of art work created by members of her youth group
Charlene Twidale with a selection of art work created by members of her youth group

A CARING mum is in line for national recognition after being nominated for a prestigious award.

Mum-of-three Charlene Twidale, 36, from Bridgepool Close, in Hartlepool, has been shortlisted for the Tesco Mum of the Year Awards for her inspirational youth work.

Charlene was secretly nominated for the award by her daughter, Charmaine, for her work setting up a youth centre on the Central Estate, where they live.

The youth centre, called Central Correctors, has been running for three-and-a-half years and was set up by Charlene to keep young people from the neighbourhood out of trouble.

“It’s nice that the kids have a safe place to go,” she said.

“I don’t want people to go through what I did when I was young, we give them someone to talk to.”

Charlene raised thousands of pounds to help fund the club at fundraising events and also secured donations from local companies and the police.

“We’ve had to fight for everything we’ve got” added Charlene.

Central Correctors encourages its 45 young members to create artwork, jewellery and take up a number of different hobbies and pursuits.

Charlene also organises trips to local care homes where young people teach residents how to play the Nintendo Wii and sell their handmade jewellery.

Charlene hopes these trips will give the older generation a good impression of the young and the good they can do for others.

Modest Christine was delighted to hear she had been short-listed for the award and is now on a list of eight mums from around the UK to attend a lavish red carpet ceremony in London next March.

Although the nomination came as a complete surprise to Charlene, her husband Chris, 36, children Charmaine 15, Chantelle, 13, and 10-year-old Colin were all in on the secret as well as the club’s volunteer staff members.

“It was a lovely surprise to hear I had been nominated, and I’d like to say thanks to everyone who put my name forward.

“It’s very exciting, it would be lovely to be the winner of the award because it is quite a big thing.

“But to be honest, I haven’t got a clue what’s going to happen, I’ve just got to wait for the postman to see what happens next.”

Carolanne Scott, one of four volunteer staff at Central Correctors, thinks the award couldn’t go to a more deserving mum.

“She helped me out a lot when I first moved here from Scotland, she’s lovely,” she said.

Central Correctors is located in Hindpool Close, on the Central Estate.