A YOUNGSTER who went from sleeping in a walk-in cupboard next to a leaking radiator to owning her own home has told how her life was transformed with the help of a youth employment programme.

Jade Green, 24, of Redcar, was sleeping on sofas and struggling to find work before being taken on as an apprentice by the local council.

She is now a senior libraries and customer service representative at Redcar & Cleveland Borough Council and is about to start a degree.

And Daniel Bunting, 17, also of Redcar, explained how his confidence soared after getting a job dealing with the public - to the point that he won an award for customer service. He works in the Neighbourhoods team at the council.

They were both supported by the council's youth employment programme team, which has now won a national award.

They were supported by the Council’s Youth Employment Programme (YEP) team who have won a national award. The team won the Municipal Journal (MJ)’s Transforming Lives category last week for their innovative work helping often vulnerable young people.

The team was hailed as “trailblazing” at the MJ Awards and their innovations could be replicated by other councils across the country to help youngsters not in education or employment.