A Manchester based shop worker and care worker are among the final four in a competition to find Britain’s Ultimate Unsung Hero of the pandemic.
Shop worker John Wozniak, 25, and elderly care worker Paula Cortés Roig, 25, both from Altrincham, could win £2,000 when the winner is announced at the end of October.
Mr Wozniak, who generously guided elderly customers around supermarkets during the height of the pandemic, said: “I’m still surprised that I was nominated to be honest. Who could have guessed?
“These months have been like a rollercoaster and having a job where I can still help others and be part of my community has been great.
“I can’t wait to do better and, hopefully, win the competition. That way I could treat myself and my girl for the hard work we’ve done!”
Ms Roig, a fifth-year medical student and care worker, said: “I am really excited for this nomination!
“I think it’s good that people working for and against this situation receive some recognition.
“I have had ups and downs during this period but I’m ready to carry on and do everything I can to the best of my ability, and of course, keep learning from it.”
The competition, organised by toiletries giant Right Guard, comes as research by them reveals attitudes towards key workers, such as binmen and delivery drivers, have changed dramatically.
A survey of more than 2,000 adults found that two-thirds of people now have more appreciation for essential shop workers and delivery drivers, while more than half feel the same for postmen and bin men.
The competition was launched to highlight and support those who worked tirelessly during these unforeseen circumstances.
Oliver Ramirez, Brand Manager at Right Guard, said: “We wanted to find and celebrate everyday kinds of heroes, who just have no idea how much they are appreciated by those around them; those who have truly gone above and beyond to make life easier for others.
“This peer-nomination campaign was about showing and inspiring kindness.
“We’re really excited to show our appreciation to Right Guard and Britain’s Ultimate Unsung Hero!”