Big-hearted Freema Chambers has changed lives of thousands of schoolchildren through her innovative clothing project.

And Freema has been nominated for the Chronicle Champions Awards in the Community Champion category for her selfless work in setting up and running the Community School Clothing Scheme.

She has been nominated by her friend, Sharlene Faith, who says she is a worthy winner.

The mother-of-three is thrilled to be nominated, but refused to take full credit.


"It's really lovely to be nominated, it's an amazing thing - but it's something the whole community works for. The volunteers will be delighted when I tell them," said Freema, 46.

After experiencing hardship and sometimes relying on the hand-me-downs of friends to clothe her nine-year-old-son, Freema understood the difficulty that many parents in Tyneside face.

She set up the Community School Clothing Scheme in 2017, collecting unwanted unwanted school uniforms which could be given to families in need.

In 2018, the Scheme grew to the point where Freema took over a 22,000 sq ft hub at The Cobalt in North Tyneside, helping thousands of families over the past two years.

The Clothing Scheme provides school uniform as well as nursery items, special occasion dresses, household items and offer storage space to those who have lost their homes.

Sharlene was glowing in her recommendation of Freema.

She said: "She is the most loving, giving person and her scheme now provides much needed services and is also a huge port of call for professional services such as social workers and Victims First.


 

"Freema is totally committed to helping our community and is truly the most inspirational lady. She deserves this award for all the work and love she puts in to making sure our community and the families within struggle a little less each day.

Freema has also helped other do-gooders find a sense of purpose through volunteering at the scheme.

The scheme has different hubs across Sunderland, Cramlington and also opened a summer collection point in intu Eldon Square.

"It's great to see the happiness on kids' faces when they wear a jumper with a school logo and they feel like they belong to that school family," added Freema, of Cramlington.

This year the Chronicle Champions Awards include sponsors The Banks Group and Northumbrian Water Group, while the event sponsor is The Grand Hotel Gosforth Park, where our glamorous evening will be held on December 4 2019.

The awards recognise bravery, devotion and selflessness in unsung heroes across the region. This is your chance to thank those people in our community that deserve to be recognised for their extraordinary efforts.

This year the Chronicle Champions Awards include sponsors The Banks Group and Northumbrian Water Group, while the event sponsor is The Grand Hotel Gosforth Park, where our glamorous evening will be held on December 4 2019.

The awards recognise bravery, devotion and selflessness in unsung heroes across the region. This is your chance to thank those people in our community that deserve to be recognised for their extraordinary efforts.

Nominations are now open and here are our 11 categories:

Champion Child of Courage

This award is for a youngster who in his or her young life has already displayed remarkable courage and provides an example for others to follow. Tell us about someone who makes you want to burst with pride.

Champion School (Sponsored by The Banks Group)

This award is to recognise the schools in our region who go above and beyond the call of duty to support and get the best out of their pupils, regardless of ability.

Young Role Model

This award is for an individual or group under the age of 16 who have gone to great lengths to improve the community around them. This could include being a great advocate for their school or community group, the area they live in and what the youth of today should be.

Champion Parent

This is to recognise parents in the region who truly are champion. This could be a mum, dad or foster parent who have exceeded all that’s expected of a parent.

Champion Fundraiser

We’d like to find those amazing individuals who have shown the greatest commitments, achievements and have made a real difference to people’s lives in their charity fundraising efforts.

Champion Business

This award celebrates excellence in community support from corporate companies and seeks to identify those organisations which best exemplify the social and community spirit which is at the core of North East culture.

Emergency Services Champion

This award is to honour an individual in our emergency services who has demonstrated outstanding bravery, initiative or support within the sector or the community, or someone who simply goes above and beyond the call of duty.

Outstanding Act of Bravery

Do you know someone who has used their initiative in a crisis, tackled criminals or even saved a life? This award is to honour a person who has demonstrated an outstanding act of bravery, whether it be a member of the public or emergency services.

Green Champion (Sponsored by Northumbrian Water)

Do you know a group, project, business or individual who have shown outstanding initiative and determination in active environmental work? They should be forward thinking, wanting to push the boundaries of environmental awareness, be a great role model for others who want to get involved and keen to continue their good work in the future.

Community Champion

This award is for a local person that has gone to great lengths to improve the community in which they live in or perhaps showing outstanding acts of kindness.

Armed Forces Champion

This award is to recognise extraordinary achievements by men or women of our armed forces and any individuals who have dedicated time and effort to help those who serve or have served for our country. Show your support by nominating your local armed forces champion.

They could even be considered a champion ambassador for their area.

To enter these awards - please click here for an online entry form - otherwise contact Amy Taylor on 0191 201 6092 or email [email protected] and she will advise on an alternative entry.

CLICK HERE TO MAKE A NOMINATION

THE CLOSING DATE FOR ENTRIES IS FRIDAY 27th SEPTEMBER 2019