Swale Youth Development Fund

Here are some examples of the talented young people helped by the Swale Youth Development Fund

Their ages and level of achievement shown are at the time of being given an award. They have continued to progress and trustees look forward to receiving updates from them.

Oscar Lyle Perez
Organist Oscar, aged 16, was able to attend the prestigious Oundle for Organists Summer Course as a result of SYDF funding. He reports that he enjoyed the course immensely and the intensive work over seven days gave him a new perspective on the range of skills that an organist would need in order to be able to win an organ scholarship or to work as a professional recitalist or church musician. The course enabled him to improve his playing as a result of feedback from some of the best organists in Great Britain. His ambition is to become a professional musician.

William Lewis
William, aged 14, started riding when he was 6 years old and soon became a member of The Pony Club enjoying all the equestrian disciplines and was a member of the junior teams for dressage, show jumping and eventing. By the age of 12 William began to jump Nationally and, with his current pony Proud Melody, an 8 year old grey gelding, began to compete seriously in BS Junior leagues.Funding supported specialised training.

Hard work, dedication and patience have seen William progress through the ranks, working his way to being in the top twenty within the South East silver league and in qualifying for the British Nationals in 2015. His ambition is to earn a place on the British show jumping team.

Toby Turpin
Toby is a talented young singer, dancer and actor. SYDF recognised his passion and was keen to offer support. Toby, 12, says, “I have been helped greatly by SYDF. I have received money towards the cost of Irish and tap shoes. I have also received financial support to enable me to participate in and travel to some amazing projects including being in the main cast of the UK premiere of “13 the Musical” in the West End and membership of the NYMT.

“Trustees are always interested in my progression and what I am up to. It’s more than just financial support, it’s like a family. My hopes for the future are more performing opportunities and to apply to a top London performing arts college at 18, and then progress to employment in Musical Theatre.”

Michael Kemsley
Michael, aged 13, began his kart racing at Buckmore Park at age 8 and by the age of 11
had acquired his first kart, a Honda Cadet, but he soon outgrew that and moved into the Super Cadet class acquiring a Birel Kart.Funding supported specialised training.
Hard work, dedication and patience have seen William progress through the ranks, working his way to being in the top twenty within the South East silver league and in qualifying for the British Nationals in 2015. His ambition is to earn a place on the British show jumping team.

Michael spent the summer of 2013 working up to his MSA National B licence and following a success in this he has now upgraded to an International C Kart Junior licence, paving the way for racing in Europe.

Michael’s father comments “The Fund enabled Michael to pay engineer costs at a key time in his progression to elite level kart racing so that he could obtain his International C Kart Licence – essential for racing in Europe. Without the help of the fund, this would have been difficult for us to finance, as the costs associated with this sport are extremely high.

Will Tumber
Will, aged 14, is currently competing and training in both ITF and WTF style of Taekwondo (WTF being the Olympic style of the sport). In 2014 Will was selected to become a member of the Great Britain Cadet Squad and won a number of competitions including the WTF Nottingham Open and the ITF LTSI Open Championships. In May 2015 he took part in his first world class championship at the Austrian Open which attracts over 1950 international athletes. Will won Bronze in his class. Later that year he won golds at the Liverpool Open and British International Open in London. In December 2015 Will was accepted on to the GB Taekwondo Junior Team. The funding he has received has assisted him in obtaining all the equipment he requires and additional training he needs to compete at this level.

His ultimate ambition is to represent the country at the 2020 Tokyo Olympics.In June 2014 Will was nominated to receive the ‘Best Achiever’ award.

In October 2014 Will was awarded the Gerry Cassell Annual Special Award.

Freya and Shannara Harrild
Both girls are successful members of the England judo junior squad, but to maintain this level of judo they attend training sessions twice a week and then at an excel centre weekly with numerous competitions and training camps. To train and compete at this level there is a lot of travel around the country necessary, often involving overnight stays. SYDF has been able to assist with the cost of competition entry fees and travel. The family is most grateful for the support that SYDF has given the girls

Freya, aged 15, has recently fought as a junior in the English Open in Sheffield and won, making her the current English junior champion. Alongside this she is the current British cadet champion and Welsh cadet champion. She is currently ranked number 1 in the Under 48 kilo weight group and is working towards becoming an Olympian in 2020.

Shannara, aged 17, has reached international level and has been selected to fight for England at various competitions. She has passed her level 1 coaching course and got her last 10 points from fighting other black belts to get her 2nd Dan (2nd degree black belt). Her ultimate aim is to compete at the World Championships and to be selected for the 2020 Olympics.

Lara Stembridge
Lara, aged 12, has been doing competitive gymnastics since she was 7, training for 11 hours a week and she loves it! She said: “My greatest achievements so far are being a member of the Kent county squad, the South East regional squad and representing the South East at the national finals. I have just qualified for my fourth consecutive national final. The Swale Youth Development Fund has helped my parents with petrol costs getting me to gym four times a week, with costs of hotel stays when the competitions are far away, and also helped with equipment I need like leotards, hand guards and track suits.”

Charlie Stembridge
Charlie, age 10, is a tennis player. He says, “I practise tennis four times a week and I do lots of tournaments all around Kent, Sussex and Middlesex. My greatest achievements are representing Kent in the county cup finals, winning the county closed tournament and reaching several leader board finals and winning one of them. The SYDF has helped with transport costs and to buy me new rackets, trainers and to have my rackets re-strung when necessary. Lots of the tournaments are a long way away and last for a few days so we have to stay away from home too and the SYDF help with this.”

Ryan Ademi
Aged just 11 years old, Ryan’s passion is for drumming and with the help of SYDF has been able to continue with drumming lessons. His progression has been swift, so much so that his teacher says that he can take his Grade 3 this July. Ryan has been described as an extremely gifted and talented individual who possesses an immense desire to learn and achieve his ambition of reaching grade 8 standard. Ryan has also joined the school band at Borden Grammar School.

Morgan Archer
Morgan, aged 13, has been a keen sailor since the age of 5 along with his Dad, and started to compete in Topper youth competitions during 2012.

He has been working his way up through the Royal Yachting Association Youth Steering group which help develop the necessary attributes to successfully progress into Youth and Olympic racing for a selected number of sailors. This year Morgan has competed as part of the British Youth Sailing team in UK and international events.

Morgan says, ‘I am very lucky to have both the support of my school for days off to attend these important events and the time my parents give up to take me. The equipment, clothing, travel and accommodation costs over the year are quite expensive so when I was awarded support from SYDF I was able to buy proper winter racing clothing which helps keep me warm during the colder months.’ Morgan finished the 2015 season by Winning the RYA S.E. Zone and Home Country Championships for the 2nd year in a row.