A group of campaigning pupils from across Paisley were the first group of Nil By Mouth (NBM) Volunteers to have their efforts to tackle sectarianism recognised through accreditation.
Pupils from Gleniffer High, St Andrew’s Academy and Paisley Grammar who were participating on the Mark Scott Leadership for Life Programme joined forces with NBM to produce a peer education programme of anti-sectarian workshops which they then delivered in a number of primary schools across Paisley.
Nil By Mouth arranged for the pupils to participate in the nationwide Saltire Awards programme which formally recognise the commitment and contribution of youth volunteering. The awards enable young volunteers to record the skills, experience and learning gained through successful volunteering placements provided by local and national voluntary agencies.
Skills and Achievements Gained
- Team Work – the group had to work together to devise a project which would benefit their local community and to choose an area which they felt passionate about: sectarianism.
- Research – the pupils carried out research into sectarianism and approached Nil By Mouth for support after looking at a number of anti-sectarian initiatives.
- CV enhanced – gaining a Saltire Award shows prospective employers or educational establishments that the individuals are committed, hardworking and willing to give up their own time to benefit others.
- Encouraged Change – the group brought together a number of school pupils across denominational and non-denominational schools who had never met before in an attempt to break down barriers and misconceptions.
- Helping Others – Cara Henderson (NBM’s patron) spoke of sectarianism as the vicious blight on Scottish society which can be overcome with hope and a change in attitudes. The group aimed to help the children understand stereotypes and what they can do to challenge these.
- Curriculum for Excellence Outcomes – the workshops met a number of learning outcomes across a broad range of subject areas including; Health & Wellbeing, Religious & Moral Education, Social Studies, Expressive Arts and Languages.