1. ITV Report

Spirit of Northern Ireland Awards 2018 launched

The Sunday Life Spirit of Northern Ireland Awards 2018 in association with Specsavers need your nominations for local unsung heroes.

The awards shine a light on the inspirational people who are the very spirit of Northern Ireland.

Now in its eighth year - the search is on ahead of the glittering ceremony in April to find those people who have gone above and beyond for others and recognise their achievements.

Eamonn Holmes, who is one of the judges, commented: “What comes across to me most of all about Spirit of Northern Ireland is there are decent people out there.

“I think we live in a society where often we’re quick to say bad things about people, and don’t praise people. Well it’s all different here, this renews your faith in human nature.”

The call is out to find those ordinary people who do extraordinary things.

Whether overcoming adversity, going beyond the call of duty in education or sport, young and old - all nominations are welcome.

Sunday Life editor Martin Breen said: “Think of those who have helped make your life better, those who have made a great sacrifice and who’ve done something that none of the rest of us could ever do. We really are looking for real life heroes here.”

The winners will be announced at a gala ceremony on 20 April hosted by UTV's Marc Mallett and Pamela Ballantine and broadcast on UTV.

Pamela commented: “Being involved in the Spirit of Northern Ireland is one of the highlights of my year, listening to the stories that come through of our unsung heroes, it really is uplifting and its heart wrenching as well but it’s such a fabulous event.”

The deadline for nominations is Friday 16 March.