Dozens of Stonewall Youth Volunteers yesterday received certificates celebrating their exceptionally hard work over the last year to tackle homophobia and promote equality in their local communities.
During the annual Stonewall Youth Awards the charity named 22-year-old Bradford University student Rosie Ellingham as Stonewall Young Campaigner of the Year for running a major campaign to challenge homophobia, which included personal speeches and workshops at schools and colleges across the country.
‘I’m extremely proud, happy and grateful knowing I’ve been part of something so big and amazing’, said Rosie. ‘It was great to have a chance to change the views of young people towards homophobia.’
The Stonewall Youth Awards marked the end of this year’s Stonewall Youth Volunteering Programme, supported by Lloyds Banking Group. Since the free six-month Programme launched in 2009 it has helped hundreds of young people develop and run campaigns to tackle homophobia and promote equality in their local communities.
Lloyds Banking Group Diversity & Inclusion Director Fiona Cannon said: ‘We’re hugely proud to be involved with this programme, helping young people find their voice in society and supporting them to tackle such an important issue. Around 30 of our colleagues mentored and worked with the young people involved in the programme, sharing their skills and experience individually and through career skills workshops. It’s been great to see the positive impact the expertise and enthusiasm of our colleagues has had, and I look forward to seeing another group of young people take up the challenge again in 2013/14.’
Stonewall Head of Education Wes Streeting said: ‘As ever, we’ve been taken aback by the commitment, creativity and good citizenship of our Youth Volunteers. Together they show what can be achieved by young people who care deeply about equality and their communities. We’re proud of every one of them, and of our supporters at Lloyds Banking Group who help make the Stonewall Youth Volunteering Programme possible.’
The 2013-14 Stonewall Youth Volunteering Programme, again supported by Lloyds Banking Group, will be launched during Youth Pride in London on 29 June. Applications will open online in July. Visit www.youngstonewall.org.uk for more information.