Art Against Knives charity wins Young Achiever award

Katy Dawe, 22

Katy Dawe, 22

A Hackney woman who set up an anti-knife charity after her friend was stabbed has won a Young Achiever Award.

Katy Dawe, 22, set up Art Against Knives after Oliver Helmsey, 21, was left paralysed from the neck down following an unprovoked knife attack in Shoreditch. She said, “I’m really honoured, it’s really amazing.”

Listen to the moment when Katy is told of her win: [audio:Katy-Dawe_.mp3]

In spite of the horror of the stabbing, Katy and her friends were determined to respond by doing something positive. So in April last year, Katy organised an exhibition at the local town hall to support Art Against Knives and to raise awareness.

Local and celebrity artists lent her their works and she was able to hold a successful exhibition which raised over £60,000.

In fact it was such a bit hit that that a number of the stars who attended the event, such as Will Young and Daniel Radcliffe, pledged give their long-term support for the cause.

Fiona Dawe, her aunt and a nominator, said, “Katy, Oliver and Alice have, without any previous experience, created something special and have leaned a huge amount about dealing with a tragic event in such a creative and positive way – and the ripple-effect is having a big impact.”

Katy’s success is particularly noteworthy as managed to interest the art and fashion world in her campaign.

Organised and run by the Young Achievers Trust, the Young Achievers Awards are held to celebrate the contribution of young volunteers, activists and social entrepreneurs in England.

More information on the Young Achievers Trust here.

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