Celebrating the talents and the triumphs of our county’s amazing young South Asians!

(2021 Entries now closed)

Help us find the 16 to 30-year-old leaders and role models of the future….

The Yorkshire Asian Young Achievers awards (The YAYAs) is the first scheme of its kind set up to recognise the efforts of young people aged 16-30, of South Asian heritage born or living and working in Yorkshire.

Its special focus is on those socially-mobile young achievers who have overcome deprivation and disadvantage, or have broken through traditional barriers to progress.

The awards are being staged again following their hugely successful launch last year which saw scores of entries from right across the county and some amazing winners chosen from a stunning list of shortlisted candidates.

The awards aim to:

  • Promote social mobility among young South Asians
  • Identify role models to help inspire others from the relevant communities
  • Encourage young South Asians to seek out and take up further and higher education opportunities

The awards will be presented during a fabulous gala dinner event on Thursday, November 4, 2021. It will be hosted by the fabulous award-winning BBC Radio and TV presenter and stand-up comedian Noreen Khan.

The event will also be available to watch via a live webcast (details to be announced soon).

Working in association with our headline partners, York St John University, the YAYAs are organised by the QED Foundation, a registered charity which exists to improve the social and economic position of disadvantaged communities in partnership with public, private and civil society organisations. It has been creating opportunities for all since 1990.

“There is a huge amount of talent among young South Asians in Yorkshire and we want to ensure it is being recognised. The YAYAs are a really exciting way to make that happen”

Dr Mohammed Ali OBE, Founder and CEO, QED Foundation


So who’s behind the YAYAs?

The YAYAs are organised by the QED Foundation, a registered charity which exists to improve the social and economic position of disadvantaged communities in partnership with public, private and civil society organisations.

The awards were launched to mark the 30th anniversary of the QED Foundation and we hope they will become an annual event.

It is supported by its headline partners, York St John University, and a host of sponsors, supporters and donors who all share the common goal of helping Yorkshire’s successful young South Asian people to attain the recognition they deserve for their achievements and their contribution to their communities, their towns and cities, their county and beyond.

You can find out more about QED and York St John below and by clicking on the links to their respective websites.


The QED Foundation

The year 2020 marked a very special moment in the history of the QED Foundation as we celebrated our 30th anniversary.

The QED Foundation has been creating opportunities for all since 1990. We believe that people of every race and faith should be able to fulfil their potential. Our aim is to help to build a peaceful and cohesive society where everyone can contribute and be rewarded for his or her efforts.

We do this by supporting ethnic minorities to find jobs and progress in their careers. QED Foundation delivers education, training and employment services to disadvantaged communities at neighbourhood level. We enable them to achieve better health outcomes and play a more active role in wider society. 

But we also support government and public sector organisations, businesses and charities across the UK to tackle inequality. We use our first-hand experience of working at grass-roots level to advise key decision makers. And we promote a positive image of Britain’s BME communities and celebrate their successes.

Working together we can put ethnic minority issues at the heart of public policy and open up opportunities for everyone.

York St John University

Founded in 1841, York St John University has been at the forefront of Higher Education for over 175 years.

We are proud of our heritage and proud to contribute to the history of York. Our city centre campus is where modern buildings meet Victorian architecture. It is a place to follow your passion and start your career.

We stand for equality, ambition and social justice and we know that education has the power to create a fairer world. We celebrate diversity and take pride in our dedication to providing equal opportunities for students from all backgrounds. Our unique Opportunity and Excellence scheme helps to break down the barriers to attending university. The difference this makes is clear, 60% of our students come from backgrounds underrepresented in UK Higher Education.*

We also demonstrate our commitment to equality through our sponsorship of the Yorkshire Asian Young Achievers awards. We want to recognise the achievements of our young Asian population and inspire them to keep pushing boundaries, breaking down barriers and making a difference in the world.

The YAYA Awards Event offers an opportunity to celebrate the excellent accomplishments of all of it’s nominees.  York St John University is proud to be the key sponsor of, and positively associated with, the YAYA Awards.

*Higher Education Policy Institute analysis 2018