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March 30th, 2012

Hoodrats…

As a follow on from last weeks blog. I saw this image and it made me think about encouraging young people in the acceptance of their individuality. Our media have sometimes been guilty of painting the young people of Britain in a negative light. I think this attitude filters down to the young people we work with, they can also, then view themselves in this same negative light, like they are not worth anything or that people do not care about them, especially those with power over them, teachers, politicians and Police.

Some of our work is about breaking down these barriers and helping young people to process these negative messages and finding acceptance. ‘Hugging a Hoodie’ is not the same as sitting down with them and building a relationship with them hearing their stories and looking at the individual. These trusting relationships is what will make a difference for some young people and could lead to feelings of acceptance. Some young people are likely to affiliate with gangs (I use the term lightly and cautiously – could just be groups of young people) because they feel accepted by those young people, rather than judged. This only affects some young people, but universally all young people (and Adults) like/need to feel accepted and as they move into adulthood they find this from a variety of sources and the Canaan Project helps some young people along on this journey of acceptance.

Again, not to reinvent the wheel but point out a campaign that continues to inspire me – the 99 Per Cent Campaign. Positive news stories about amazing and beautiful young people.