Rickie Griffith has scooped the Rising Star award at The Prince’s Trust and TK Maxx & Homesense West Midlands Awards.
The awards recognise the achievements of young people who have succeeded against the odds, improved their chances in life, and had a positive impact on their local community, as well as those who have played a part in supporting the work of the trust.
Rickie, 26, said: “I have always been told that I couldn’t do the things I wanted to do because of the challenges I faced in school resulting in a lack of qualifications.
"Then I found The Prince’s Trust and they showed me, that with the right support, I could do the things I’ve dreamt of doing. Since being on the Get Started with Apps programme, my life has been transformed. I now have a career in my dream job as a software engineer at Capgemini in Telford.
“After school and a catering course, I had a young family to provide for and secured a janitorial job. It was long hours and paid the bills, but it wasn’t the IT job that I wanted.
"I never gave up hope and managed to secure a place on The Prince’s Trust Get into Apps programme.
"Here nothing was seen as a barrier and I was determined to make the most of the opportunity.
"For the first time, I had people supporting me, telling me that I can do the things I wanted to do.
"After the course, I secured a two-week work placement with Capgemini, which resulted in the amazing opportunity of an apprenticeship. Now in 2019, I have passed my apprenticeship and am succeeding in my career at Capgemini.
"With the confidence The Prince’s Trust has helped me develop, all the hard work, determination and resilience has finally paid off.”
Rickie received the award at a ceremony held at Aston Villa's football ground, Villa Park, on Thursday.