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  • Writer's pictureLove Ballymena

Brilliant Ben recognised with Diana Award for fundraising efforts

Ballymena Academy pupil, Ben Dickinson, has received the prestigious Diana Award for his dedication and fundraising efforts that has brought in over £35,000 for charitable causes.

Established in memory of Diana, Princess of Wales, The Diana Award is the most prestigious accolade a young person aged 9-25 years can receive for their social action or humanitarian work.

The Diana Award is the longest running award for young people through a retrospective nomination process only, which makes it even more special. Young people do not work towards the award, rather they demonstrate their suitability through their actions, without any expectation of reward.

At just 11 years old, Ben is making an incredible effort to help people. Through two fundraising campaigns, the former pupil of Ballykeel Primary School has raised money and awareness to help terminally ill children, and feed disadvantaged children and adults throughout the UK.

In February 2021, Ben ran a mile a day for 26 days, raising over £7,300 for the Northern Ireland Children’s Hospice.

Then in March 2022, Ben started a 10-day, 64-mile trek, from Larne to Old Trafford. His target was to provide 50,000 meals through the food poverty charity ‘Fareshare’. After smashing his target in just six days, Ben raised his ambitions and provided 115,000 meals with the £28,000 raised, while raising awareness for food poverty in the UK. 

Commenting on his award, young Ben said:

"I never could have imagined that the small ideas I came up with in my bedroom to keep me active and raise some money for two worthy charities could grow so big or have such a massive impact on the lives of people across the UK.

“I didn't do it for reward, I just wanted to help young people less fortunate than myself in a fun way, so to receive the Diana Award doing something I enjoy is just the icing on the cake.”


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