THE Starr Trust held its annual celebration night to honour the lives and achievements of the 4,580 young people it has helped over the past nine years.

Staff also wanted to thank the businesses and individuals who made it possible.

More than 200 people were at the Sussex County Cricket Ground in Hove where supporters had the chance to meet the young people whose lives have been transformed by their generosity.

The Starr Trust supports ten to 18-year-olds in the BN postcode area to fulfil their potential in art, sport and education by providing a helping hand when they really need it.

A spokesman said: “What a wonderful evening. The Boundary Rooms at the cricket ground were buzzing and we were thrilled to see so many of our supporters there.

“Local businesses including the Hilton Brighton Metropole, The Implant Centre and Gemini Printing were only a few of the many who have helped us and we’re so grateful for their continued support.”

During the evening many families spoke of how the Edward Starr Awards had turned their children’s lives around.

One mother, known only as Maya, talked about the financial difficulties her family had faced and how, since receiving an award to help with his basketball costs, her 13-year-old son Bako was now thriving.

He was recently chosen to play for Storm Basketball Club, one of the largest and most successful basketball clubs in the South East.

Highlights of the evening included recitals from two talented young Starr “champions”.

One was Jasmine, an opera singer who was awarded a grant to attend the Guildhall and is now flourishing at drama school.

She spoke of how much her confidence had grown since receiving her award.

The audience also heard from a young stage manager Connor Lovejoy.

He received his award six years ago and went on to graduate from the Brit School and Royal Welsh College of Music and Drama.

If you know someone who would benefit from an award, email or you can go to