Show Racism the Red Card has always been a massive influence in myself getting into football. The organisation, which has been going for 20 years plus, has be an integral part in helping to unite people from all walks of society by the use of football. As well as this, their campaigns have impacted many people but none more so than myself. The first time the charity was recognised to me was back in 2007. I was a young school pupil (Primary 7) going to Ibrox to be part of a football racism workshop. After a number of sessions held at Ibrox and at other venues, I had began to understand the cause of racism and why people used such language.
As a person from an ethnic minority background, I always felt part of a group when attending sessions and it allowed me to gain more confidence when watching/attending football matches without having to feel uneasy at games. As well as this, the engagement on stamping out bigotry, sectarianism, homophobia etc. has really allowed the charity to grow and express themselves as one of the leading names in Scotland.
Since the sessions back in 2007, I have attended a number of different workshops from SRtRC. The one clear message that is emphasised by the SRtRC team was the idea of unity within a society, whether that would be living together or going to a football match. Many of my colleagues at university, as well as at my school (high school), have respected my views and beliefs regardless of skin colour etc. I firmly believe that this was because of the education of charities such as SRtRC. It is therefore imperative that organisations such as SRtRC continue to have funding in order to keep educating people in the present, as well the future the generation.
In the last few years, social media has been a massive part in engaging with a wider audience. I believe that social media is massive for the future and will only continue to grow. Already we have seen what impact social media can have. The number of tweets for example from the organisation, as well as the backing from football clubs, has helped to extend the idea of unity.
My own story of SRtRC has provided a new confidence within myself in football and this has allowed me to choose a career path now which is within the football media industry. I have never experienced racism at a football match nor when travelling away from home at football games. I believe one of the reasons why, is the annual 2 week programme which clubs and SRtRC participate in. This and the various other work the charity does with schools etc, has allowed the organisation to grow and be one of the most successful in Scotland to help tackle all forms of racism, sectarianism etc.