A CHARITY providing housing for some of Bolton's most vulnerable young people has praised the Bolton Business Awards for improving its success.

Backup North West, formerly Bolton Young Persons Housing Scheme, won the not for profit award last year.

Maura Jackson, the director of Backup, says the award has enabled the charity to achieve their goals.

"I think it's affected us positively. The great thing about winning the award is that it's good for business, it gives us exposure to an audience we wouldn't normally have.

"We're a credible organisation, there is a perception that charity means not professional. we're actually operating a bona fide business and the award gives us strength because it gives us support from an external body.

"The exposure we get from a local, respected award elevates us in the eyes of the public. It improves trust. We get more contacts with people, they say they'll make a donation or become a volunteer.

"That means we'll be better for the young people of Bolton."

She added: "Even if it does nothing else, people who need us will know about us. Anything that raises awareness in business circles in so important."

This year the awards will be celebrated at a prestigious ceremony at The University of Bolton Stadium on Thursday, September 26.

Awards will be given for 15 categories, including Regeneration Project of the Year and Family Business of the Year. Any businesses interested in entering should visit: www.theboltonnews.co.uk/business-awards.