North Ferriby Kung Fu instructor awarded British Empire Medal
- 31 December 2013
- From the section Humberside
A woman who uses kung fu to help young people overcome drug addiction and other problems has been awarded the British Empire Medal (BEM).
Odette Mitchell, 41, from North Ferriby in East Yorkshire, founded Hull Kung Fu with her husband Mike in 2002 and teaches more than 140 people a year.
Mrs Mitchell said it was set up as a training school, but they soon realised they could "help with other problems".
The 41-year-old said it was a "nice shock" to be recognised for her work.
"We get a lot of young people who have used drugs or who are using drugs, and we try to help them have something to focus on," Mrs Mitchell said.
Others recognised in the Queen's New Year Honours list include PC Sharon Houfe from Humberside Police, appointed MBE for services to policing.
Miss Houfe, 41, was nominated for her work developing relationships with Hull's Muslim community and for tackling racial bullying in the city's schools.
Lesley Wilkinson from Hull is appointed MBE for services to children and families, and Brian Marsh from Cleethorpes receives a BEM for charitable services to education therapy for children with physical and intellectual disabilities.