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Aaron’s flair scoops first prize in NHS careers contest

A nine-year-old boy from Dorchester has been named regional winner in an annual contest designed to help young people consider a career in the NHS.

Aaron Miah, a pupil at Leweston Prep School near Sherborne, was inspired by the NHS staff who helped his little brother, and used his creativity to write a heartfelt poem saying thank you to health service workers.

He scooped top prize for the Thames Valley & Wessex region in the Step Into The NHS primary schools competition, winning vouchers to spend.

This year’s competition saw an impressive 1,871 entries from more than 3,000 pupils in 273 primary schools throughout England. As well as learning about some of the 350 careers in the NHS, pupils had chance to say thank you to NHS staff for their work to fight COVID-19.

The judges were A&E doctor and TV presenter Dr Ronx, professor of careers education Tristram Hooley and teacher trainer Hannah Wilson.

Aaron said: “When I entered it I thought ‘wow, imagine if I won’, and a couple of months later I actually won! I was feeling quite nervous because if I won I didn’t know what would happen, if I would get into the news or win a prize, I just didn’t know.

“My brother is ill and when I thought about all of the names that helped me and my brother that’s when I got the idea to write the poem. I am really thankful to all the people that helped in the NHS with me and my little brother and everyone.”

Headteacher Alanda Phillips said: “Encouraging the pupils to demonstrate their gratitude to those working in the NHS during the height of lockdown was critical for us, and the quality of the poetry that they produced was testament to how deeply they engaged with the work.

“Aaron’s poem was a stunning dedication to the NHS, which really demonstrated his understanding of the importance of every role and the impact that all those staff have on the patients that they treat. I am so proud of Aaron’s achievement.”

The Step Into The NHS contest provides a host of useful teaching resources to help raise students’ aspirations and understanding of the many careers available in the NHS.

The resources help students learn about themselves by encouraging them to explore the wide range of jobs in the health service.

Dr Navina Evans, Chief Executive, Health Education England, said: “This year’s entries for the Step Into The NHS contest have been superb – imaginative, fun and thought-provoking – and I am absolutely delighted to congratulate Aaron and all our winners.”

The competition is returning for the 2020-21 school year with a brand-new look designed to increase its appeal to students across the country. Developed in partnership with teachers, the Step Into The NHS website includes a careers quiz, real-life stories from NHS staff, work experience tips and learning resources to help young people explore the hundreds of roles within the NHS: www.stepintothenhs.nhs.uk/

For details of all the career opportunities the NHS can offer, visit the Health Careers website here:- www.healthcareers.nhs.uk/

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