South Uist’s Gemma Steele announced as Young Scot Awards finalist

South Uist lass Gemma Steele has been nominated for a Young Scot 2014 award
South Uist lass Gemma Steele has been nominated for a Young Scot 2014 award

Young Scot, the national youth information agency for Scotland, has announced that Gemma Steele from South Uist, has been shortlisted as a finalist in the Sunday Mail Young Scot Awards 2014.

Twenty-two year old Gemma is a finalist of the Young Scot Unsung Hero Award.

Gemma was just a teenager when she flew out to Kenya to volunteer in an orphanage. When the orphanage closed due to financial reasons, Gemma returned to Uist and began to raise funds to build a new orphanage. 

The new orphanage was completed in 2012 and is home to 24 young people.

Gemma faced huge opposition and had to flee with the children after a group of machete-wielding armed robbers raided the orphanage. This did not stop Gemma and work on a new children’s home is set to begin in September, relocating the orphanage to a safer area. 

Now in its ninth year, the Young Scot Awards aims to recognise and celebrate the amazing achievements of young people aged 11-26 years.

With 11 categories ranging from Sport, Arts and Health to Enterprise, Heritage and Volunteering — three finalists in each category are invited to the glamorous awards ceremony in the SECC Glasgow on April 10th. 

The winners from each category will be announced on the night, alongside performances from X Factor finalist Nicky McDonald and emerging teen artist Elyar Fox.

Louise Macdonald, Chief Executive of Young Scot, said: “Congratulations to our outstanding finalists! The young people of Scotland never cease to impress and inspire me - the standard of this year’s Awards entries was truly outstanding.

“We were blown away and humbled by the incredible stories of this year’s talented and hardworking nominees and we’d like to thank everyone who took time to share these inspiring stories about young Scots.  

“We’re extremely proud of the finalists and can’t wait to celebrate their achievements on April 10th.”

For tickets and more information on the Young Scot Awards 2014 please visit