THE judging team on The News’ Woman of the Year Awards had a difficult task of choosing the winners.
There were stories of great success in the arts, business, fashion and education.
But there were also nominations for women who had shown enormous courage when faced with devastating, life-changing, situations.
Lorraine Blackburn is one of those women. The 30-year-old, from Waterlooville, lost her son Owen, who was born prematurely when he was just 12 weeks old.
Although heartbroken Lorraine decided to dedicate herself to helping the neonatal ward at Queen Alexandra Hospital, Cosham, where her son was treated.
She now works for the charity Ickle Pickles and, through them, she has raised almost £130,000 to give other babies the chance of surviving.
Lorraine was named The News’ Woman of Courage. She said: ‘I feel totally overwhelmed. I’m just doing what I need to do.
‘If it helps another family to hopefully not go through what we went through, if they get just a little bit longer with their baby, then it’s worth it.‘
Danielle Wellington was highly commended.