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Ryan Shortlisted for Carer of the Year Award

A student who was shortlisted in the Northamptonshire Carers Awards was honoured at the annual ceremony at Rushton Hall yesterday (January 25th).

Ryan Richards was nominated by his mum Sharon for his help in looking after his sister and his nephew.

His sister Melissa has Chrohn's disease and has had to spend time in hospital but Ryan always steps up to look after both her and her two-year-old son, Tylar.

Even from a young age, he demonstrated a caring nature by helping to look after his mum, who is disabled.

Mrs Richards said: "Ryan just helps out without even thinking about it. When we're looking after Tylar, he will get him dressed ready for school. He does all these things without asking because he's just in tune with what needs to be done.  

"He is very kind and mature for his age, I know I can always rely on him. I work part time so when his dad and I are at work he'll help out.

"I am conscious that he still must have a childhood so he still does all the normal teenage things too.

"I just felt he needed to be recognised."

Ryan, who is in year 10, is a member of a Young Carers Group and goes on day trips with other carers in the county.

He said: "When I found out I'd been shortlisted for the award I thought, 'wow'. I didn't even think I'd be shortlisted.

"I don't think about anything I do - I just get on with it."

The Jane Roebuck Northamptonshire Carers Awards is now in its second year and is organised as part of the NHS' 'Who Looks After You?' campaign.

The awards are held in association with the Evening Telegraph, the Chronicle and Echo and BBC Radio Northampton.

There are 59,000 people living in Northamptonshire who care for an elderly or ill loved one. The figure includes 7,000 young carers.