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Teen dad turns life around and wins award helping others

PUBLISHED: 16:58 08 July 2008 | UPDATED: 13:25 05 October 2010

A TEENAGE dad who spends his spare time helping other youngsters in London’s Easy End has won a national award for his efforts. Saifur Rahman counsels the homeless and other troubled teenagers through a project at Whitechapel’s Rathbone Centre. Now the 17-year-old from Limehouse has been named one of a handful of UK Achievers of the Year in awards presented at the Houses of Parliament

A TEENAGE dad who spends his spare time helping other youngsters in London's Easy End has won a national award for his efforts.

Saifur Rahman counsels the homeless and other troubled teenagers through a project at Whitechapel's Rathbone Centre.

Now the 17-year-old from Limehouse has been named one of a handful of UK Achievers of the Year in awards presented at the Houses of Parliament.

The awards were organised by Rathbone youth charity to honour youngsters who've made it through learning or who have helped others.

Saifur has done both, overcoming serious personal problems and going on to inspire others.

His life was in a mess last year, with few job prospects.

Then becoming a dad at 16 meant taking on responsibility and he began to mature.

He signed-up to a Rathbone project which encourages youngsters from 16 to 25 to devote free time to worthy causes.

"Saifur is able to work with youngsters because he's been in their position and can empathize with them," said the project's Whitechapel coordinator Yasmin Begum.

"Without his contribution, the project would not be as successful as it is today."

Saifur is now learning the skills for a career in business administration and has already completed courses in First Aid and Health & Safety.

He is one of eight other youngsters receiving an award at the House of Commons last week from Beverley Hughes, Minister of State for Children and Young People.

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