The Premier League has launched the ‘Draw Together Challenge’ aimed at empowering children to help and support others who face discrimination.
Primary school pupils across England and Wales are encouraged to draw or paint a picture on the theme of allyship, detailing the positive action they will take to help challenge discriminatory behaviour, wherever they see it.
Draw Together is a free downloadable activity created to support the Premier League’s ongoing No Room For Racism initiative. It is available through Premier League Primary Stars, the League’s curriculum-linked education programmes, which uses the appeal of professional football clubs to inspire children to learn, be active and develop important life skills.
As part of the initiative, Helen Raley-Williams, headteacher of Holy Trinity Catholic Primary School in Liverpool, invited CBeebies presenter Ben Cajee to talk to a Year 6 class about his personal experiences of racism.
Helen Raley-Williams said: “All children should be heard and be able to explain how being discriminated makes them feel. Being open and allowing discussions about discrimination supports the children’s mental health and reinforces the fact that it is totally unacceptable to discriminate against another human being.”
Ben Cajee, CBeebies presenter, said: “Having faced discrimination myself when at school, I know first-hand the importance of education on this issue.
“To have videos of Premier League footballers talking about their own experiences of racism and the importance of looking out for each other as part of this challenge, is key in showing children how vital it is for us all to support others. It’s something I would have appreciated at that age.”
The challenge will run until Friday 11 June 2021 and teachers are able to submit artwork on behalf of their class at Key Stage 1 (5 to 7-year-olds) or as individual submissions for Key Stage 2 pupils (7 to 11-year-olds), via the online teacher form on the Premier League Primary Stars website: plprimarystars.com.
All schools that submit entries ahead of the deadline will be entered into a prize draw for the chance to receive Premier League goodies for their school. One lucky entrant will see their school receive a special visit from the Premier League Trophy.
The artwork and pledges of 20 pupils will also be selected at random to be displayed in a No Room For Racism gallery on the Premier League and Premier League Primary Stars websites, while all primary schools that enter the challenge will receive copies of the official PL Writing Stars poetry book ‘Beautifully Different, Wonderfully the Same’ for their libraries.
Nick Perchard, Premier League head of community, said: “The Premier League Draw Together Challenge will enable children and teachers in classrooms up and down the country to have safe and open conversations about racism and the detrimental impact that discrimination has.
“We hope this will encourage children to create artwork and pledges that demonstrate their support for others and will lead to further discussions with family members and friends about the importance of us all playing our part in helping to tackle racism.”
The education of fans, children and young people is just one of the ways in which the Premier League is tackling discrimination as part of its No Room For Racism Action Plan. You can watch a video of Ben Cajee’s visit to Holy Trinity Primary School here: https://we.tl/t-dZJl18ogE1