4th March 2014

Young people involved in EACH’s Reach project have received national recognition of their work challenging homophobic, sexist and cyberbullying across Bristol, South Gloucestershire and North Somerset.

The Diana Anti-Bullying Champion Award recognises the work of young people who take a stand against bullying and challenge it within their schools and communities. Participants in Reach have been working together to share their experiences of prejudice-based bullying, turning them into useful, tangible messages to help other young people and model best practice to the adults working with them.

In October 2013 fifteen young people from Reach were nominated as potential candidates for the Diana Anti-Bullying Champion Award. This sought recognition of the work they had undertaken between September 2012 and August 2013: creating films and workshops on a variety of issues related to homophobia, sexism and cyberbullying. In January 2014 EACH was delighted to learn that all fifteen had been successful in securing the award.

In addition to being awarded as Diana Anti-Bullying Champions, three Reach participants and EACH’s Executive Director, Jonathan Charlesworth were invited to attend the National Diana Award Ceremony in London on Friday 28th February 2014.

Travis Alabanza, Ella Barraclough and Tilly Bungard with EACH’s Projects Coordinator, Kate Marston and Jonathan attended the ceremony on behalf of the Project. Travis has been able to maintain his work with Reach throughout 2014: delivering workshops and mentoring new project members. Travis said, “Reach helped me state views I once felt were unheard and allowed my voice to help others by challenging homophobic and transphobic bullying and language. Winning the award feels amazing like others are not only recognising my voice but those of many other lesbian, gay, bisexual or transgender young people”.

EACH’s Executive Director commented, “We enjoyed attending the ceremony to celebrate publically the achievements of young people involved in Reach. Homophobia is a topic that many, including adults, find difficult to talk about in school. I am so pleased that the young people’s maturity, dedication and insight has been recognised by the Diana Award”.

The materials created form part of a landmark new resource combining powerful evidence, practical ideas and strategies for adults working with young people. The resource will be showcased by EACH and Reach participants at their upcoming conference on Tuesday 13th May 2014: Cyberbullying and Prejudice: Safeguarding Young People’s Time Online. Members of Reach will be leading workshops alongside national experts in e-safety and prejudice-based bullying.

If you know a young person who would welcome involving themselves in Reach get in touch on reach@eachaction.org.uk. Alternatively if you are an adult who works with young people and want to find out more about the resource and EACH’s upcoming conference on 13 May telephone 0117 946 7607.

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