A YOUNG woman from Widnes has been named as finalist for the Merseyside Women of the Year Awards 2024.

There are 20 finalists who have been recognised for their work supporting and improving the lives of people in Merseyside and beyond through volunteering, activism, charitable organisations and more.

Emily McChrystal is one of the finalists and has been recognised for empowering marginalised young people in the Liverpool City region.

The 24-year-old found out she was nominated after a friend told her that they wanted to put her forward for it.

“I already felt like I’d won by just being nominated,” said Emily.

“I’m not the type of person who gets nominated for awards or has that kind of special stuff around them, so it was really exciting.”

Emily played a pivotal role in establishing and developing the Comic Youth’s Marginal Publishing House, the first youth-led publisher of its kind in the UK and centres a lot of her work around empowering you people.

Through her campaigning, engagement and training, Emily has support more than 535,000 community members within the UK and has helped generate more than half a million pounds for the organisations and communities she has worked with.

“It’s so strange but I think I feel like I’ve never worked because I’m so passionate about it,” she said.

“I think that’s why I feel really humbled by being nominated because it just feels like it comes naturally and it’s something I enjoy.

“You get to meet so many amazing people and there’s so much joy that comes out of the hardships you navigate with people as well.

“It just takes one person to validate one person’s feelings or perspectives and that can change the projection of that person’s entire life.”

The Merseyside Women of the Year Award event will take place at the Crowne Plaza in Liverpool on Friday, June 28.

“Being a finalist for this award, it doesn’t feel like it’s just for me – it’s for every woman who has ever supported me to be where I am now and its all of the community members I’ve been able to support,” she said.

The winner will be selected following a public vote and after being marked by the organisations judging panel against its criteria.

The public vote is open until midnight on Sunday, June 2, and you can cast your vote here.

“This year we saw the largest number of entries we have ever received, and the quality was outstanding,” said Ellie Kerr, founding director of Merseyside Women of the Year.

“The Merseyside Women of the Year Movement is committed to providing a platform for women to be seen, heard and found.

“Our finalists are business and community leaders, volunteers, campaigners and creatives who are using their time, skills and expertise to help others, change whole industries and make our region a better place.”