7 June 2016

Pupils celebrate their success
Pupils celebrate their success

Two South Lanarkshire schools have teamed up with Scotland’s anti-sectarianism charity to help its efforts to build bridges between communities.

Pupils at Muiredge and St John the Baptist Primary Schools in Uddingston took part in a special day of sporting activities as part of their ‘Champions for Change’ programme with campaigners Nil by Mouth. The schools have been working with the charity over the past term with pupils attending a number of education workshops focusing on raising awareness of the harmful impacts of sectarianism both in their own classrooms and together in school gym halls.

In addition to the educational sessions pupils were also treated to a day of sporting activities with facility, equipment and bus hire funded by Nil by Mouth’s latest ‘crowdfunder’ appeal. The event concluded with a special ‘arms linking’ challenge with pupils attempting to set a Scottish Record for the most number of people standing up with their arms linked from a seated position.

Nil by Mouth runs its ‘Champion for Change‘ schools programme right across Scotland. In 2015/16 more than 7,000 pupils from 96 schools across 21 local authority areas.

Pupils took part in the arms linking challenge
Pupils took part in the arms linking challenge

Nil by Mouth Campaign Director, Dave Scott, said:
“We’ve been hugely impressed by the energy, enthusiasm and commitment shown by pupils, teachers and parents from both schools over the last few months. It’s been good to see existing friendships strengthened and new ones being formed. Our ‘Champions for Change’ schools programme aims to bring children from different religious and cultural traditions together to learn more about each other and provide shared experiences.

We also love the fact that the schools have used sport as a positive vehicle for change and focused on how it can bring people together rather than being used as a dividing line between communities. This was a brilliant way to round of our term of activities with the Primary 7 classes.

The ‘arms linked ‘challenge is a bit of fun but conveys a powerful message focusing on the importance of working as a team to achieve things together.  The message we want the pupils to take from this programme is that difference is something to be celebrated not feared.

None of this would have been possible without the public digging deep to support our ‘Champions for Change’ appeal. Even £3 a month can go a long way and help us bring together young people at events like this.”

If you’d like to support our school programme you can donate quickly and securely at: