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Pride of Britain Awards 2015

Simon Cowell with BuddyBear

In 2015, to his surprise Brendan McConville, Chairman of the Buddy Bear Trust found out he had been nominated and shortlisted for the Pride of Britain Awards. He went on to win the UTV Pride of Britain Award, receiving an invitation to the ITV Pride of Britain Awards Ceremony in London.

As the main fundraiser for the Buddy Bear Trust, Brendan has dedicated the last 25 years to ensuring that the School remains open and helping every child fortunate enough to be able to attend it. On hearing of his nomination for this award, Brendan was firmly of the belief that the award was for the whole school, a recognition for the great work that everyone involved with Buddy Bear Trust contributes to it. A team effort.

On the night of the awards Brendan, along with all the other regional winners of the Pride of Britain met in the Hotel that the awards ceremony was taking place in to celebrate their own achievements and find out who the ITV Pride of Britain award was going to. Unfortunately Brendan did not win this award, however he successfully used the opportunity to meet with celebrities such as Simon Cowell, Alisha Dixon, Boris Johnston, A.P McCoy and many others to raise awareness of the Buddy Bear Trust and the great work that Ildkio (Principal Conductor at the school), all the classroom assistants, staff and parents do.

By networking and talking to everyone at the event, the fight that parents, their children and the Buddy Bear Trust face was able to be highlighted. Many people were very interested in seeing photos and videos of the children’s progress and leaflets about the School (which Brendan conveniently happened to have on hand!) and also how, although given no hope of a future by Health Officials, these children have been able to overcome the adversity they face and achieve great outcomes such as, being able to roll over, craw, walk, eat and communicate - things that we all take for granted!

The Pride of Britain awards ceremony therefore was a great place to make connections for the whole of Northern Ireland, as celebrities such as Simon Cowell were interested in visiting the Buddy Bear Trust and Northern Ireland.

Please take a look at the video that UTV’s Paul Riley made after Brendan’s nomination. You can find it here.

You can also read more about Simon Cowell's chat with Brendan here!

Recent News

BBC Broadcast Appeal - June

Shauna's daughter Penny was born with Cerebral Palsy, she discusses the importance of Buddy Bear Trust to her family. For more information about the BBC's Broadcast Appeal and videos, please click here:

Our visit to Stormont this week has raised the profile of our children and Buddy Bear Trust

Some parents and pupils from the Buddy Bear Trust, along with Brendan McConville, Mary Murphy and Prinicpal Ildiko Veres visited Stormont this week to highlight the negative issues facing parents and children who want to attend the Buddy Bear Trus...

Thank You Jill McCann

Buddy Bear Trust would like to say a huge thank you to Jill McCann from Omagh! She ran in the Last One Standing, Castleward, Co. Down event. Jill ran a fantastic 43 miles in 10 continuous hours, in aid of Buddy Bear Trust. The total amout she rais...

SWC Sports students at Dungannon Campus are fundraising for Buddy Bear

Matthew Calvert and Jordan Holland with Brendan McConville
Second year students level 3 sports at South West College Dungannon are doing a sponsored cycle in aid of the Buddy Bear Trust in Dungannon. The event is called peddle for pounds and will take place on static bike in the Dungannon campus. ...

SLDP visit Buddy Bear 11/04/16

Colum Eastwood with Ildiko Veres and Brendan McConville
Today the SDLP visited the Buddy Bear Trust.           This is what Colum Eastwood had to say:   Here are some of the photos:

Lord Morrow welcomes new Conductor Anges Kasper to Buddy Bear

Lord Maurice Morrow with Ms Ildiko Veres, Mrs Jennifer McCooey with her daughter Maeve and Buddy Bear
Lord Maurice Morrow , Minister of Department of Social Development  congratulated Ms Ildiko Veres, Principal and Brendan McConville Chairman of the Buddy Bear Trust on being awarded the Pride Of Britain Awards for NI at the recent event in Grovern...