Roberta Lyons from Ballinderry, who is a classroom assistant at Ashfield Girls’ High School in East Belfast, was the recipient of the Classroom Assistant of the Year award at the recent Families First NI ceremony.
The prestigious awards ceremony celebrates and recognises those who have gone above and beyond their duty to make life easier for those around them.
Roberta was nominated by the school’s Learning Support Co-ordinator, Tracy Rossborough, because of her inspiring work and positive attitude when supporting pupils. “In 2016 we were devastated when Roberta was diagnosed with breast cancer and had to undergo gruelling surgery followed by months of chemotherapy and radiotherapy,” explained Ms Rossborough.
“Through it all she remained positive and stayed in contact with school, sending us messages with ideas for the new Christmas crafts as well as sharing strategies for supporting ‘her pupils’. When she was well enough, she immediately returned to school with her drive and enthusiasm, ready to take on new challenges. Nothing is ever too much for Roberta. She always goes the extra mile for pupils, parents and teachers.”