THEY campaign fearlessly, fundraise tirelessly, speak out against injustice and stand up for what they believe in.
The Glasgow Times 2019 Young Scotswoman of the Year finalists are inventors, activists, pioneers and inspirational role models, helping to make the world a better place.
Tomorrow, in a series of features dedicated to our SWOTY awards, we will reveal who has won the prestigious title.
On Thursday, we will announce who will follow in 2018 winner Lucy Lintott’s footsteps to take the 2019 grand title.
SWOTY, held in association with St Enoch Centre and supported by Grand Central Hotel, Scottish Passenger Agents Association, Mackay & Inglis and Jones Whyte LLP, has been a firm favourite on the city calendar since 1963.
The coronavirus outbreak meant the glittering gala dinner planned for March had to be cancelled. Instead, all finalists from 2019 and 2020 will celebrate together at next year’s event.
Evening Times Editor Callum Baird explained: “We took the decision to cancel SWOTY because the wellbeing of our finalists, their families and friends and all of our guests is our main priority. It is the first time since the awards began in 1963 that the event has not taken place.”
He added: “This week, we will reveal our magnificent winners. Our finalists are fantastic and we are grateful to them for their patience and support during the last few months. We are looking forward to celebrating properly with them all next year.”
Before tomorrow’s big reveal, here is a reminder of all six young women in the running to be crowned Glasgow Times 2019 Young Scotswoman of the Year.
In 2017, Molly was diagnosed with a rare form of bone cancer. Refusing to let it dent her dreams, she sat exams in hospital and achieved straight As. With fellow patient Sara, identifying a gap in service provision for seriously ill eight to 12-year olds, Molly held the Every Thank You Counts Ball which raised more than £250,000 for the creation of a social space in hospital for those young people. Molly has also teamed up with the Teenage Cancer Trust to manage its Instagram page, and has set up Molly’s Fund, teaming up with local chemists to provide free digital thermometers to newly diagnosed patients.
ELLORA JAMES AND MARI-ANN GANSON
Ellora and Mari-Ann created Envirocache, a groundbreaking app which uses geocaching technology to provide children with nature treasure hunts.
The two women came up with the idea three years ago when, at the age of just 15, they entered a competition at Wick High School. Now students – Ellora is studying Ethical Hacking, Mari-Ann is training to be a teacher – the duo continue to nurture Envirocache, inspiring other young people in the technology and innovation sectors and beyond.
Activist Holly is helping to build a global movement of young people demanding governments take action on the climate emergency.
The passionate school striker from Fort William hopes her actions will draw attention to the issue and force politicians to act. Inspired by Swedish climate change activist Greta Thunberg, Holly has become a strong voice here in Scotland, invited to speak at the Green Party’s political conference, the Edinburgh Book Festival and more, and she has been recruited as an environmental correspondent for her local newspaper.
Razannah, from Alness, has been volunteering since she was 14. She is passionate about giving back to her local community and breaking down stereotypes about Muslim women.
She has helped to organise events across Scotland promoting youth voice social action and co-hosted the First Minister’s Question Time: Next Generation. She is the co-chair – alongside Deputy First Minister John Swinney – of the newly launched Task Force on Gender Equality in Education and Learning.
After watching classmates struggle to cope after the death of a fellow pupil, Largs teenager Corrie set up the groundbreaking mental health project Clearer Minds.
She won North Ayrshire Young Person of the Year for the initiative, which uses special assemblies, videos, comic book workshops and a mental health ambassadors programme to provide vital emotional support.
The local council was so impressed it earmarked £30,000 of funding for the scheme and plans are afoot to roll it out across North Ayrshire and potentially even further.