Young people from across Nottinghamshire have welcomed a host of public figures to an anti-hate summit to raise awareness of the impact of hate crime.
The youngsters, who are all under 18, have been working on a youth community project run by restorative justice charity Remedi, in conjunction with Nottinghamshire County Council, to research and understand the psychological and social effects of hate.
The Restorative Action Project, which forms part of Remedi’s Step Up Beat Hate campaign, involved six weeks of educational workshops and a visit to The Holocaust Centre in Nottinghamshire where scheme participants heard a survivor talk about their personal experience.
The campaign culminated in a one-hour summit at Nottingham Forest FC in which their work was presented to a high-profile audience of MPs, charity volunteers, community leaders and Nottinghamshire Police and Crime Commissioner Paddy Tipping.
Speaking after the event, Mr Tipping said: “The young people who’ve staged this event have increased our understanding of the devastating effects of hate crime on mental wellbeing.
“It’s not easy to host an event of this magnitude with such prominent visitors and I take my hat off to all those involved.
“Today’s youngsters are tomorrow’s adults and it’s vital we encourage the next generation to break down the barriers of separation and division which threaten our communities and promote a message of togetherness.
“This event has gone some way to doing that and I congratulate these youngsters for their contribution to fighting hate crime.”
Cherry Triston, manager of Remedi Nottinghamshire, added: “I am immensely proud of everyone involved in this ambitious project.
“We have measured an increased awareness of what constitutes hate crime and the impact of it with the young people involved.
“Our organisation, Remedi, encourages creative and proactive restorative approaches and Step Up Beat Hate allows Nottinghamshire young people to reflect upon it from their perspective.
“Likewise in Manchester, Barnsley, Sheffield, Rotherham and Derby, young people are doing the same, planning how best to bring their communities together.”
As part of its Step Up Beat Hate campaign the young people involved have viewed and reflected upon Remedi’s Manchester Hate Crime film, created with Home Office funding, featuring young people’s experiences of hate crime including arena survivors .
The film can be viewed online at www.bechangefilm.org