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12 July, 2005

Anti-Bullying Massif receives Diana Award

On 7 July a group of young boys from Islington, known as the Anti-Bullying Massif (ABM), received a prestigious Diana, Princess of Wales Memorial Award for their work against bullying in their school.

Youth Act!'s Anti Bullying Massif, winning a Diana Princess of Wales Award 2005.
The anti Bullying Massif receive their Diana Princess of Wales award

With national reports of bullying on the increase, these young people are addressing the issue themselves.

ABM, from the Central Foundation School for Boys in Islington Islington, came together during a taster event run by a Citizenship Foundation project, Youth Act! in May 2003.

The group, increased from six to nine members, felt strongly about the issues and damages of bullying. As a result, they applied to take part in a six week Youth Act! training programme to learn how to campaign for change.

“We are delighted that ABM has received this accolade as the group really took the challenge to heart and dedicated a great deal of time and energy to their campaign," said Carrie Supple, Youth Act! project director.

“They increased their members, did additional peer mentor training and even met in their free time at weekends, during holidays and after school to further their campaign. Their approach to the project was inspiring.”

Since September 2003 ABM’s activities, progressing from school-based to international activities, have included:

• Poster campaign/slogan creation in school;

• Articles in school magazine and online;

• Weekly lunchtime counselling sessions for referred pupils;

• Assembles to raise awareness and recruit new allies amongst hundreds of their fellow pupils

• Speaking at Islington deputy headteachers’ training day

• Running workshops for headteachers;

• Helped make an anti-bullying film for the DfES;

• Planning British Council bid for international links with other anti-bullying initiatives.

What ABM members say:

“Youth Act! has changed who I am” (Jarrell, aged 14)

“It has meant to me that small people do have powers and sometimes grown-ups don’t realise, but we small people do!!!” (Zak, aged 14)

Youth Act! aims to increase young people’s ability to bring about social and political change in their community. It is open to ages 11-18, and is funded by The Bridge House Estates Trust Fund, Deutsche Bank and the Carnegie UK Trust.

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