A DEDICATED youth worker was named the best in town back in 2005.

Jim Ward was honoured with the title of Renfrew Citizen of the Year after two decades of community work.

The father-of-five made it his life’s ambition to target some of the area’s most vulnerable people and open up new opportunities for them.

Together with his youth worker wife Pauline, the 53-year-old was determined to get youngsters off the streets and into more constructive activities like sport.

He was one of the founder members of Cherrie Boys’ Club, aimed at steering lads away from trouble and into football.

The grandfather-of-four told The Gazette at the time: “It’s all about the young people for me. I want to reach as many as I can.

“If you get them while they are young, you have a chance of keeping them off the streets and out of trouble.

“The boys’ club is doing well and we are going back to basics, bringing in some younger boys and building up the teams.

“The youth centre is still running but money is always tight there, so it’s a constant challenge to find new ways of finding funding.

“We are getting some good support from places like Renfrewshire Council, so hopefully we can get some cash because it would be a shame if the place had to close.”

A number of local residents nominated Jim for the award, which was run by Renfrew Community Council.

Effie McGachie, chairperson, said: “Jim is a really nice person and deserves the title." 

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