Pupils get creative to beat bullying

The Northern Ireland Anti-Bullying Forum (NIABF) hosted a special awards ceremony at Lough Neagh Discovery Centre recently to announce the winners of its annual creative competition and students from Lough Road Learning Centre, St Francis Primary School and St Teresa’s Primary School in Lurgan were among the recipients.

Wednesday, 4th March 2020, 2:44 pm

The event was a celebration of local young people’s inspirational creativity and vision for a world where ‘Change Starts With Us’, the recent Anti-Bullying Week theme.

Caidon Canning from Lough Road Learning Centre, Lurgan, won the SEN category, Hannah Willis from St Francis Primary School was runner-up in the Primary Y5-Y7 Art Category, and Sophia Geoghegan from St Teresa’s Primary School, won the Primary Y1-Y4 Art Category.

Children and young people from schools and youth organisations across Northern Ireland were encouraged to enter work in one of two categories: art or creative writing. Four age categories: up to Year 4, Year 5 – 7, Year 8 – 10, Year 11 and over, helped to ensure a broad range of participation.

Gill Hassard, Senior Participation Officer at NCB, host of Northern Ireland Anti-Bullying Forum (NIABF), said: “The recent Anti-Bullying Week had the theme of ‘Change Starts With Us‘. Whether it is verbal, physical, online or in-person, bullying has a significant impact on a child’s life well into adulthood.

“By making small, simple changes, we can break this cycle and create a safe environment for everyone, where everyone is heard. Together, we can end bullying.

“Our creative competition is designed to support schools and youth organisations and encourage young people to consider how they can be a part of positive change.

“We are thrilled that so many took the opportunity to submit entries and share their creativity. I would like to congratulate all of the winners.”

Education Minister Peter Weir added: “Change Starts With Us’ is a powerful message to send to all our children and young people. I commend all the entrants for their imaginative and creative approach to this competition and send my congratulations to all the winners.”