Nobody deserves profession success as a lot as Joe Traynor, winner of the 2021 Overcoming Adversity Award on the Sunday Life Spirit of Northern Eire Awards with Ulster Financial institution.
he Co Down man, who as a teen had plans to go to school to check sports activities science, is as an alternative now working and finding out on the age of twenty-two for a profession in monetary recommendation.
The swap was fully selfless as Joe gave up his personal ambition to permit his youthful brother to go to school after their mom tragically handed away when Joe was simply 18.
The Bangor teen had no alternative however to overlook about college and get a job to help himself and his brother Jack who was 16 on the time.
As we launch this yr’s Sunday Life Spirit of Northern Eire Awards in affiliation with Ulster Financial institution, Joe backs a name for entries and believes he’s not alone in overcoming adversity in his life.
Because of his arduous work and dedication, at this time he’s heading in the right direction for a profitable profession as a monetary advisor.
Nonetheless, at 18, he and his brother discovered themselves alone and homeless after shedding their mum Lynda, who was simply 55-years-old, to alcoholism in 2018.
The boys suffered the trauma of watching their mum die, regardless of frantic makes an attempt by Joe at CPR as he tried to save lots of her life.
Previous to her dying, the younger brothers had endured a tricky childhood as their mom battled alcoholism.
At present, Joe believes that the stigma of alcoholism must be lifted in order that youngsters can search help.
He says: “We simply by no means talked about it, because it was embarrassing and looking out again now, I want we had informed our academics as perhaps we’d have gotten some help.
“Jack and I by no means actually talked about it, even to one another. It is just in recent times that I’ve informed folks and I really feel now if it helps to scale back the stigma then it must be talked about.
“I nonetheless really feel that manner. Profitable the Spirit of Northern Eire Award was an actual shock, however for me too it was an opportunity to focus on alcoholism. Something that will get folks speaking about it’s worthwhile.”
Joe admits that the majority of his childhood was overshadowed by his mum’s battle with alcohol.
Not lengthy earlier than her dying she spent three weeks in ICU after taking a seizure.
“Medical doctors mentioned it was a miracle she survived it and mentioned if she didn’t cease consuming it could kill her,” he remembers.
“She was a superb mum and when she wasn’t consuming, she was bubbly and really completely satisfied and would speak to anybody.
“The morning she took one other seizure, me and Jack had been upstairs preparing for varsity after we heard her fall and he or she known as us.
“I rang the emergency companies who talked me by way of CPR, however she was so fragile and weak, I might really feel her bones breaking as I did it. The ambulance males couldn’t revive her.”
Her dying left her boys alone to fend for themselves.
Joe was on his first yr of a BTEC Degree 3 Sports activities diploma course at South Japanese Regional School (SERC) with plans to go on and research sports activities science at college.
He explains: “When mum died, I couldn’t afford to go to school.
“Jack and I had been instantly very alone on the earth and though now we have good household help now, on the time it was like a hurricane had knocked the wind out of us.
“I couldn’t take into consideration going to school then and the main focus for me was to get a job and begin incomes cash to help us.
“We couldn’t afford the lease of mum’s home and finally fortunately we acquired an residence.”
Regardless of every thing he has been by way of, Joe has no self-pity and solely talks about his gratitude for a way issues have labored out.
He’s grateful that after speaking to the careers crew in SERC he was given recommendation on apprenticeships and located a gap in monetary companies.
He began coaching with 1 4 U Monetary Options in Bangor and went on to finish his mortgage exams final yr.
Joe has simply began a brand new job as a monetary advisor with an English-based agency who’re paying for him to do additional exams.
Mockingly, numerous his work entails giving households’ recommendation on insurance coverage insurance policies to keep away from the monetary difficulties he and his brother confronted when their mum died.
He admits: “My life has taken a special path and I’m on a brand new steep studying curve.
“Principally, I assist households shield themselves in opposition to going through monetary hardship, whether or not that’s within the occasion of dying, sickness or harm.
“I’ve private expertise of what can go terribly improper within the blink of a watch.”
Because of giving up his dream of college, his brother Jack is now on his ultimate yr of finding out at Liverpool College.
However Joe continues to excel and was thrilled not too long ago to be given an Apprentice of the 12 months Award on the 2022 SERC Excellence Awards.
He says: “I couldn’t imagine I acquired Apprentice of the 12 months and I really wasn’t even going to go as I believed I had no probability of successful.
“It’s one thing to be happy with particularly as it’s for one thing that I had no thought would turn out to be my life.
“The Spirit of Northern Eire award was additionally a shock. I had Covid and couldn’t attend the ceremony and I used to be gutted however I actually didn’t anticipate to win.
“I used to be buzzing after I heard and for me it helped put the highlight on alcoholism to assist folks with habit. It’s one thing I nonetheless need to get into, serving to different alcoholics and hopefully sooner or later I’d crew up with an area group like AA as a volunteer.”
The Overcoming Adversity class is that this yr sponsored by Stroll Insurance coverage, which was arrange in Northern Eire on the top of the pandemic.
A dreaded process on the ‘to do’ checklist yearly, sorting our automobile insurance coverage has historically been a irritating, time-consuming and, at instances, overwhelming course of.
However Stroll Insurance coverage is altering that by making automobile insurance coverage straightforward while offering nice cowl at costs prospects can afford.
Managing director Brian Allen says: “Our prospects stay in a world the place every thing is only a click on away and the way they buy and entry their automobile insurance coverage needs to be no totally different.
“It’s been an enormous problem to tackle a really conventional trade, particularly in opposition to the background of a pandemic, however as a enterprise we’re curious and courageous, very similar to the heroes within the class we’re sponsoring this yr, Overcoming Adversity.
“It is usually testomony to our prospects who’re trusting us, a beginner on the block, to assist make their lives simply that little bit simpler.
“All of us play an element in serving to one another, now greater than ever, and we couldn’t be prouder to be concerned on this yr’s Spirit of NI Awards.”
*Rockers Ash will likely be acting at this yr’s Spirit of Northern Eire Awards.
The Downpatrick band, driving excessive within the charts with a particular vinyl re-release of their album 1977, will take to the stage on the glittering ceremony on Friday, September 30 on the Culloden Property and Spa in Co Down. Lead singer and guitarist Tim Wheeler, bassist Mark Hamilton and drummer Rick McMurray helped launch the awards throughout a latest go to to Belfast.
Fellow NI superstars Snow Patrol carried out on the final awards in 2019.
*If you already know somebody who has Overcome Adversity and deserves to be recognised nominate at this time at email@example.com
AWARDS CATEGORIES AND HOW TO NOMINATE:
Unsung Hero (sponsored by The Boulevard)
Somebody whose nice deed or deeds have beforehand gone unnoticed, however who can have made a significant contribution to your life or to your group.
Overcoming Adversity (sponsored by Stroll Insurance coverage)
Somebody who has overcome big private challenges, whether or not it’s coping with sickness or incapacity or overcoming issues.
Spirit of Youth (sponsored by Higher)
Somebody underneath the age of 18 who needs to be recognised for his or her particular achievements.
999 Hero (sponsored by Protect Accident Administration)
A member of the emergency companies who has gone above and past the decision of responsibility of their job.
Charity Champion (sponsored by Kingsbridge Basis)
Somebody who has labored tirelessly for a charity or as a fundraiser for a few years.
Spirit of Well being (sponsored by Balmoral Healthcare)
A medical skilled who has gone the additional mile to enhance the well being and well-being of their sufferers.
Spirit of Training
This award recognises a very inspirational trainer who has helped youngsters and younger folks fulfil their potential.
Caring Spirit Award (sponsored by Energy NI)
An individual, younger or outdated, who has devoted their time to caring for a pal or member of the family.
Spirit of Sport
Somebody who has made an distinctive contribution to native sport over a variety of years.
Local weather Hero (sponsored by Concentrix)
Seeks to recognise a person or group group going the additional mile to look after and shield the native atmosphere for future generations.
Somebody who the judges really feel represents the Spirit of Northern Eire by selflessly serving others and being an inspiration to us all.
Nominations will likely be acquired up till August 22. To appoint somebody couldn’t be simpler. Merely e mail your nominations to us at firstname.lastname@example.org and inform us the story of the one who has made a distinction. You may as well put up nominations to us at Sunday Life Spirit of Northern Eire Awards, 33 Clarendon Highway, Belfast, BT1 3BG