Queen Mary Uni’s shortlisted volunteer award student Harriette off to Parliament with her new dress

Queen Mary student volunteer Harriette Pearson

Queen Mary student volunteer Harriette Pearson - Credit: QM Uni

A medical student shortlisted for a national volunteering award for her project to help children in hospital in London’s East End is buying a new dress to go to Parliament for the reception.

Harriette Pearson has made it through to the top five ‘Student Volunteer of the Year’ A-List with her ‘Project Play’ at the Royal London in Whitechapel.

She is off to the Houses of Parliament on Monday where the winner is being announced.

“I was definitely surprised by the nomination,” Harriette said. “But the event is an excellent occasion to buy a new dress.”

The 22-year-old Queen Mary University student won the judges over for getting 47 fellow students involved with youngsters in the hospital by setting up volunteer play groups at the nearby hospital.

“I would love to see our ‘Project Play’ continue for many years,” Harriette added. “We want to set up more provisions for teenage patients and are planning a Young Enterprise award next year.”

Her project makes hospital life better with activities outside the children’s usual specialist play hours to help boost their confidence and response to treatment.

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Student Hubs, which organises the awards, said their judges agreed unanimously that Harriette’s project “stood out and belonged in the top five”.

The judges recognised her abilities to “overcome barriers faced by busy medical students.”

Monday’s grand winner gets £1,000 towards a charity or volunteering project of their choice.