More than 150 famous faces including Prince Charles, Ant and Dec, and Joanna Lumley gathered in London to honour those receiving Pride of Britain Awards.
The winners, nominated by the public, are ordinary people who do extraordinary things.
Among those recognised this year was part-time firefighter Stephen Warton, 53, who saved a teenager’s life while risking his own.
When Kacper Krauze, 13, sank to the bottom of the River Eden in Appleby-in-Westmorland, Cumbria, in February 2019, Mr Warton took off his safety gear – going against protocol – and rescued him.
Also recognised were Hughie Higginson, 10, and Freddie Xavi, 11, who raised more than £200,000 after Hughie was diagnosed with leukaemia.
Gee Walker, 67, from Liverpool, received the special recognition award for her work in promoting racial harmony.
Her son, Anthony, was killed in a racist murder in Merseyside in 2005.
A year later, she founded the Anthony Walker Foundation, which works to combat racism.
Hollywood star Sharon Stone was among those presenting an award this year. “It’s really amazing and these stories are so touching and capture what people have been through,” she said.
TV presenter Ben Shephard, who was on this year’s judging panel, said it was a “tough and incredible experience” and “very humbling”.
Host Carol Vorderman said the “incredible” winners “make you want to be a better person”.
Co-host Ashley Banjo said he had “so much respect and admiration for all of the winners”.
The ceremony will be shown on ITV at 8pm on Thursday.