We were announced as winners in the Health and Wellbeing category for the mentoring work we have carried out during the coronavirus lockdown and beyond.
NASSA basketball sessions were suspended in March 2020 and were not permitted again until June when six participants at a time were allowed back on outdoor courts.
The remote mentoring work carried out by NASSA coaches and staff was vital to the mental health of over 150 vulnerable young people.
Through individual Facetime sessions and phone calls, each young person was given as much support as or she needed or wanted to talk through the issues affecting them.
NASSA also streamed live fitness classes and basketball skills sessions for the young people to join in daily.
The awards were staged remotely by the Rotary Club of Stratford which commended NASSA for “transforming their position to provide effective mental health and wellbeing to young people in response to the COVID crisis.
“The challenge of supporting people with mental health issues shows initiative and energy.
“Fear, isolation and loneliness are major issues, so to grapple with them so swiftly is commendable.
“NASSA is a well-known and well-liked organisation who do amazing things. They showed focus and awareness to support young people when so many services were struggling.”
Accepting the award, NASSA Chief Executive Natasha Hart MBE praised the work of everyone within the NASSA family during the pandemic.
She said: “It is great news and so well deserved for all the NASSA volunteers, coaches and parents who made time to help young people during this really difficult period. This is an award for everybody at NASSA.
“It has been an immense challenge for myself and all the NASSA coaches, so this award will give everyone connected with the charity a boost to know that what we are doing is being valued.
“There is so much more to do and the young people need our help more than ever at the moment.”