The community is still buzzing with pride this weekend as Tara-Bella Halai, a 22-year-old medical student from Harrow, was honoured with the ‘Outstanding Young Person’ award at this year’s Harrow’s Heroes on Wednesday.
The awards, organised by The London Borough of Harrow (Harrow Council), celebrates the exceptional contributions of individuals who make a positive impact on their community.
Tara-Bella’s journey towards this remarkable achievement began at the age of 14 when she joined St John Ambulance (SJA). Her initial motivation was to learn essential lifesaving skills in first aid and to provide event coverage within her local community.
Over the years, Tara-Bella’s dedication saw her actively participating in providing first aid at major events, including Lord’s Cricket Ground, football stadiums, and even the renowned London Marathon.
Reflecting on her early experiences with SJA, Tara-Bella said, “I absolutely loved it from the minute I joined, which has led me to study medicine at university with the aim of becoming a doctor.”
Her journey into the field of medicine was not without its challenges. She commenced her university education during the height of the COVID-19 pandemic. Despite the daunting circumstances, her determination shone through.
She embarked on her first placement at a hospital’s respiratory ward, placing her on the frontlines of healthcare during a critical time.
In recognition of her exceptional service and leadership qualities in Harrow, Tara-Bella received the Deputy Lieutenants (DL) award in 2020.
The award, presented by DL Simon Ovens, highlights her significant contribution and dedication to mentoring many cadets within the St John Ambulance organisation.
Tara-Bella’s commitment to serving her community extended even further. In April of this year, while off duty on the H14 bus in Harrow Town Centre she provided essential first aid to an individual experiencing a seizure and a mental health episode, exemplifying her dedication to helping those in need.
Today, Tara-Bella has grown within St John Ambulance to become an Advanced First Aider, Youth Leader, and Trainer. She is determined to give back to the local community and inspire the next generation of young people.
“I am so grateful and honoured to have received the Outstanding Young Person of the Year at the Harrow Heroes 2023,” she said.
“I never expected to get nominated for this award, let alone win in the outstanding young person category. It was such a privilege to be invited to the award ceremony and see the fantastic contributions all the nominees and winners make to the Harrow community.
“I’d like to thank the organisers and sponsors of the event for such an amazing evening!”
Her commitment to making Harrow a better place for all has rightfully earned her the title of ‘Outstanding Young Person of the Year.’