May 4 2011 By Siba Matti
A TEENAGER who gives up his free time to volunteer for an animal charity is our latest Local Hero award nominee.
Scott Lewis, a pupil at St Martin's School in Moor Park Road, Northwood, has been put forward for the Outstanding Young Person category of the annual competition, run by the Uxbridge Gazette and Leader series with Uxbridge College.
The 13-year-old used his computer skills to help make a DVD and website for The Friends of RSPCA Southridge, a fundraising branch for the animal charity, in Potters Bar, Hertfordshire.
The centre - which is run by volunteers - rescues, adopts, fosters and re-homes dogs and other furry friends.
Although Southridge is funded by the RSPCA, extra money is always needed to cover the cost of veterinary treatment for animals.
Scott spent days helping to write the script for the DVD. He was also responsible for uploading text onto a teleprompter and ensuring it ran at the appropriate speed for each member of staff.
The year eight pupil said: "Working on the DVD was distressing at times because all the animals that were being filmed are struggling to find a new home.
"Each time an animal was re-homed, I removed their clip from the DVD and burned a new one.
"One of the animals that was lucky enough to find a new home was Emmy – a pig found on the M25.
"Her owners had cut off her ears so they could not be traced through her ear markings.
"She was featured on the DVD and afterwards offered a new future.
"That makes all the hard work worthwhile, and I will continue to help in any way that I can."
The generous teenager was also one of many students at St Martin's who decorated more than 350 shoe boxes before filling them with toys and sweets for the Love in a Box appeal.
The appeal was in aid of Christian charity, the Mustard Seed Relief Mission, which helps needy children in Eastern Europe.
Scott, who personally collected 25 boxes, spent months amassing yo-yos, teddies, toy cars, gloves and scarves and also raised money to buy new gifts.
He even used his initiative to send a letter to Clarks headquarters requesting additional shoe boxes, before picking them up from stores.
In addition, the benevolent student also helped to organise events for Red Nose Day at the school, which raised more than £2,200 split between Comic Relief and the Cooper Kenya School, which St Martin's supports.
Scott also raised almost £300 for the Harefield Dogs' Trust by arranging a cake sale with his brother, Jordan, 15, who attends Merchant Taylor's School in Sandy Lodge, Northwood.
The teenager was nominated for a Local Hero award by his school teachers, including head of English, Linda Flynn, and headmaster, David Tidmarsh.
Mr Tidmarsh said: "Scott is a quiet, unassuming boy who always thinks of others rather than himself.
"According to the legend, Saint Martin was famed for doing good deeds for other people and Scott epitomises that.
"Bearing in mind he is from a fortunate background, it's wonderful he recognises that charity doesn't begin at home.
"He just quietly goes about his work and doesn't make a big fuss, that's exactly what a hero should be.
"We have a lot of very kind boys here but he is a shining example and we are extremely proud of him and his achievements."