SRtRC worked in partnership with Redbridge Council, Vision, Redbridge Culture & Leisure and Hall of Fame members, Dagenham & Redbridge FC to organise a full day of educational activities for young people from local Redbridge schools.
Over 110 pupils from six primary schools came to take part in educational workshops exploring racism and stereotypes, Hate Crime and prejudice faced by Gypsy, Roma and Traveller communities; thanks to the Roma Support Group and a tour of the stadium – seeing behind the scenes, including the changing room and dug-out areas.
In the afternoon, young people were able to put their questions about the issues of racism, hate crime and discrimination to a panel which included first team players Scott Doe and Joe Widdowson, David Landau of Redbridge Equality Council, Mike O’Hanlon, Redbridge Diversity Programme Manager, SRtRC patron and education worker, Lionel Morgan and Mihai Calin Bica and Szymon Glowacki of the Roma Support Group.
The panel answered the questions really well and there were some very thoughtful enquiries from the young people of Gilbert Colvin Primary, South Park Primary, Woodlands Junior, Cleveland Primary, Goodmayes Primary and Uphall Junior schools.
SRtRC provided some T-shirts and mini-footballs for the questions the panel thought were the most interesting and all of the young people were able to take away a copy of the new SRtRC magazine and wristband in a goody bag and collect autographs from Scott and Joe.
Darren Trippick, Sports Development Officer at Vision Redbridge Culture and Leisure, who helped to promote the event to schools asked some of the audience what they had learned and what they thought of the event.
Farza Khan, Year 6 pupil at Cleveland said “We learnt the meaning of racism, how it affects different people and how we can tackle bad situations.”
Yasmin, Year 6 pupil at Woodlands said “It is brave to stay out of name calling because you need to put yourself in that person’s shoes and see how you would feel.”
Olivia Morris-Brown, Year 6 pupil at South Park said “I really enjoyed today because I learned that it’s OK to say people’s skin colour, but it depends how you say it. I also liked that everyone discussed that no matter what ‘race’, religion and background we should all be treated equal.”
Many thanks to the schools, pupils and teachers for attending the day and of course to the panel for their time and thought in answering the questions. A big thank you to the club, particularly Richard Tyne and Denis Lawrence for their help organising the event and to Darren Trippick and Redbridge Council for their support in advance and on the day. SRtRC looks forward to future work in the area and with Dagenham & Redbridge FC.