This year GREC is teaming up with STEP (Scottish Traveller Education Programme) for the annual GREC Anne Frank Awards. The Awards have been on a COVID-19-related hiatus over the past few years, with no ceremony taking place since June 2019. However, it is hoped that the Awards, which use the powerful story of Anne Frank to highlight with young people the importance of equality and human rights, will return for an “in-person” event in June 2022.
Each year schools and youth groups are encouraged to submit the work of children relating to equality, human rights, and global justice. Given the on-going inequalities and prejudice faced by Gypsy/Traveller communities in the UK, this year will see schools encouraged to take part through engagement with STEP’s “Shifting” graphic novel, which encourages young people to use their creative writing and design skills to complete the story.
‘Shifting’ is a graphic novel telling the story of two young Gypsy/Travellers’ experiences of discrimination. The story introduces Joe and Tillie and describes their experiences of bullying behaviour in several different schools. The graphic novel is being distributed free to schools throughout Scotland with the aim of generating dialogue about discriminatory behaviour, recognising difference and taking positive action. A range of activities accompany the resource exploring the various themes arising in the story. It has been written and illustrated by Metaphrog, a graphic novel duo.
Dave Black, General Manager at GREC, said,
“Our team are very excited to re-launch the GREC Anne Frank Awards. It’s been a hugely difficult few years for both young people as well as the most marginalised communities in Scotland. Through this partnership with STEP we hope that some of these key issues of discrimination can be highlighted in a positive and engaging way. We know that many Gypsy/Traveller families see Grampian as one of the most hostile in Scotland, and we hope this initiative will, in the long term, help address this. We really look forward to seeing what Grampian’s young people make of it, and the projects that it inspires.”
Maureen Finn, Director at STEP, added:
“We are delighted that GREC will use the graphic novel Shifting to confront bullying behaviour in schools. The format of the unfinished story encourages all young people to get involved and know that they can make a difference. Using their own imaginations they can reflect on the reality of the young Gypsy/Travellers’ experiences and suggest how things need to change. We’re also pleased that participating pupils from travelling and non-travelling families will take part in a creative workshop with graphic novel duo Metaphrog, giving them a chance to find out about careers opportunities in the digital media world.”
As well as Gypsy/Traveller equality theme, the Awards will also welcome submissions on other projects, work, activities, etc. by young people around equality and human rights. For examples of previous projects, the 2022 application form and more, visit www.grec.co.uk/anne-frank/
For queries and to get started with the Anne Frank Awards 2022, email firstname.lastname@example.org
Shifting was supported by the Scottish Government