Port Kennedy teen wins City of Rockingham award for improving lives of homeless

Aidan with mum Nicola.
Aidan with mum Nicola.

EMPATHETIC Port Kennedy teen Aidan Blackshaw won the City of Rockingham Community Citizen Award Youth category on Australia Day for his outstanding work to improve the lives of the homeless.

The 15-year-old organised bathroom care packages consisting of soap, shampoo, toothbrush and toothpaste, deodorant, wet wipes along with a few other bits and bobs to give them a basic dignity most of us take for granted.

Aidan is a student at Warnbro Senior High School Education Support Centre and after being inspired to enter a competition run by Bendigo Bank last year titled ‘How would you improve your community,’ he came up with the idea.

“I thought it was a really good idea, something that had not been implemented in the area at the time,” he said.

“It gives people high esteem and pride of being clean.”

He said research and asking others for help was key to his idea’s success.

“Do researching at the library and ask lots of people for help,” he said.

He enlisted the help of others and soon had people donating items not just from his own school but surrounding ones as well.

After receiving the donations his class made up the packages and took them to the City of Rockingham from where they were then distributed to the homeless in September 2017.

He said he was quite surprised to win the community citizen award.

“It was a surprise but it made me feel proud…ultra proud,” he said.

His mum, Nicola said she too was proud of Aidan.

“I could say so many things but I am exceptionally proud of him,” she said.

“It just proves, especially with young people if you put your mind to it you can help others.”

Aidan said he was hoping to do the care packages as an annual event and was already planning his next community improvement venture.

“I have the idea of bringing Fresh Food Markets to the area, like the Kalamunda Markets – and the fruit and vegies are usually a lot better from markets,” he said.