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Sixteen-year-old Ryan Lea-Cox was named Volunteer of the Year in the annual Kickz Awards.

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Kickz began as a pilot project seven years ago between the Premier League and the Metropolitan Police to engage with young people in communities through free football coaching.

Eastbrook School pupil Ryan both takes part in and helps out at Kickz at Dagenham and Redbridge FC.

He was awarded his prize by BBC Radio 5 presenter Mark Chapman.

Another teenager, Freddie Weaver, 16, who attends Sydney Russell School, received the Inspiring Young Person award which was presented to him by Barnet manager Edgar Davids.

The club’s community liaison officer Teresa Parish said: “These two youngsters are a shining example of what young people on our community projects can achieve and how using the power of working with a Football league club can engage young people and help them to achieve positive things.”

Kickz coach Dawn Nicholls was also shortlisted for the Most Inspiring Female national award.

The awards took place on April 2 at Stamford Bridge, the home ground of Chelsea FC.

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