Not long left to nominate local little champions for our awards

Champion child - Ruby-Lou Courtney and mum Romy Joseph. (W535D347)
Champion child - Ruby-Lou Courtney and mum Romy Joseph. (W535D347)

Little Ruby-Lou Courtney was just a few days old when she underwent life-saving heart surgery.

The youngster was born with a condition called aortic stenosis, which is a narrowing of the main valve in the heart.

The operation to widen the artery was successful, but complications that have developed as she has got older, mean the four-year-old will have to undergo open-heart surgery in the future to repair the valve that is now leaking.

But despite all of this, and being diagnosed with type-1 diabetes at the age of one, Ruby-Lou is still all smiles.

Mum Romy Joseph, of Canal Lane, Stanley, said: “She is one of the happiest children you could meet and so energetic and clever. She is amazing in my eyes and takes everything in her stride.”

Her diabetes means the Stanley St Peter’s School pupil cannot have sweets and treats like her friends, she has to brave needles on a daily basis for her blood sugar tests and is also insulin dependent.

Miss Joseph, said: “We can’t sit on the sofa with a bag of sweets and watch her favourite film, but she never complains, or asks for things she knows she can’t have.”

Ruby-Lou was nominated by the family’s friend and neighbour, Louise Coleman.

She said: “She has been through so much in her short life and never moans. She is a little superstar. A day out being spoilt would be so special for her.”

If you know a youngster who has gone the extra mile for friends, family or neighbours, courageous children who have bravely battled illness or quick-thinking miniature heroes, you have until Friday, November 29, to let us know.

Nominated children will be invited to a glittering awards ceremony at Wakefield Theatre Royal, where they will be presented with an award before being treated to a performance of this year’s Christmas pantomime - Jack and the Beanstalk.