Plymouth City Council, PAFC and Argyle in the Community team-up for educational event at Home Park.
Pupils from Old Priory and Laira Green Primary Schools came to Home Park to take part in a series of workshops from SRtRC, examining racism and stereotypes and Toby Gorniak, about racism faced by members of the Gypsy, Roma and Traveller communities. The young people also had the opportunity to take in a tour behind the scenes of Home Park. Participants reported that they particularly enjoyed the cell (!) and visiting the pitchside area.
After the thought provoking workshops in the morning, the young people had a break for lunch. As it was a glorious April day in Plymouth they were able to eat their lunches in the stands. After lunch, everyone reconvened in the Players Lounge for the afternoon session, which would feature a screening of the SRtRC film and Q&A with a panel of special guests.
First, the afternoon session was officially opened by Judith Harwood, Assistant Director of Education, Learning and Families at Plymouth City Council. Judith spoke to the young people about what they had learned during the day and talked about the City Council’s commitment to educating about racism.
After the film screening, a panel of special guests assembled to take the young people’s questions about racism. We were fortunate to be joined by two members of the PAFC first team, club captain, Curtis Nelson and goalkeeper James Bittner.
Joining the players was SRtRC, England and Watford legend, Luther Blissett. Toby Gorniak also joined the panel, as did Jill Palmer, Community Cohesion Coordinator at Plymouth City Council. Completing the panel was PC Graham Little, from Devon & Cornwall Police, Diversity and Community Team.
With such a great panel there was no shortage of excellent questions from the audience. SRtRC provided prizes of T-Shirts and mini-footballs for the panel’s favourite questions. None of the young people left empty handed however as there were SRtRC goody bags to take away and Toby gave every young person a voucher for a free street dance lesson!
SRtRC would like to thank the club and Argyle in the Community for their continuous support for the event and campaign, particularly Jason Chapman and Mickey McCloskey. Big thanks too to Plymouth City Council for their sponsorship and ongoing support, Jill Palmer and Judith Harwood for attending, Toby Gorniak for taking part and Graham Little and Luther Blissett for their panel contributions.
Our thanks also to the schools for participating in the day. SRtRC looks forward to the next event with PAFC!