September 21 2014 Latest news:
Story by: JOHN ELWORTHY
Monday, July 21, 2014
A Haddenham teenager recovering from cancer who has become a role model for others is in a Cambridgeshire-wide competition that hails the achievements of young people.
Callum Rhys-Brown was diagnosed six years ago with a rare form of tumour, located in the centre of his brain. Yet after months of treatment and a major operation he refuses to feel sorry for himself and insists he’s just “an ordinary person”, who wants to help others.
In 2008, along with his friends Harvey Feltwell and Lewis Bendall-Craft, Callum won a junior YOPEY after taking part in a Relay for Life and raising money for charity.
Now he has been nominated again, but this time on his own for the Linx Young People of the Year or the YOPEYs ¬ ‘Oscar’.
Callum, 19, of Ashleaf Close, was nominated by Claudia Stein-Carr, organiser of Soham Friends Project, an activity group for 10-16 year-olds, where Callum has volunteered for 18 months.
Claudia said: “Week in week out, he tirelessly encourages and engages with the young people and is a wonderful role model to them, despite his own challenges.
“Our young people grow in his presence and he has grown in confidence and self-esteem since he joined.”
His mum Sally said: “He’s one of the most positive and resilient people I have ever met. “From day one he’s been very stoic, tenacious and determined. He’s definitely a survivor and is the first to help.
“He’s a genuinely nice lad and he makes the most of life. There is no bitterness in him.”
Within months of the operation Callum insisted upon returning to school and completed his GCSEs at Witchford Village College. He has now gone onto Long Road Sixth Form College to study health and social care.
Callum’s advice? “Never give up, just be persistent and it gets easier. The problems may not go away but you have to keep working. Take one day at a time and live each one as best as you can.”
* Do you know somebody who deserves the title Young Person of the Year? To nominate logon to yopey.org <http://yopey.org/> or write, enclosing a stamped-addressed-envelope, to YOPEY, Woodfarm Cottage, Bury Road, Stradishall, Newmarket CB8 8YN for a paper entry form. Entries close on August 15.