Inspiring women

05 April 2018

A London student has been praised for her inspiring story of determination and leadership in her community.

Fatima Hussein won the Youth Sport Trust’s Beckwith CARE Award, for her role in the Local People project in Brent.

The Capital City Academy (Brent) student is a great example of how important leadership is in community development. Involved in the Local People project in Brent from early on, Fatima was initially encouraged to bring her own difficult experience of school and use it to develop as a leader.

From this, Fatima started to lead within her school, helping with after school activities and she even began to lead activity herself.

The Local People programme takes a neighbourhood approach, engages local people and empowers them to address wider issues in their communities and neighbourhoods through collective action.

Initially, Fatima worked with a buddy and this gave her the confidence to begin to share her expertise and experiences.

Fatima said: “I am a Muslim female from the Somali community and this gave me a status among other girls particularly those from my own community.

“Working with someone else gave me the confidence to try new things, and then as I was encouraged to lead activities myself I knew I had a friend with whom I could try things. It gave me my first sense of connection.

“I began to promote my sessions when meeting the other girls, encouraging them to attend and pointing out the benefits.

“I am always supported to get the opinions of young people and bring them to the steering group. I find this really empowering.”

Fatima has encouraged young girls from her school to attend sessions, and as some have learned of her association with Queens Park Rangers Football Club, they have taken the opportunity to help them make the transition from school to community football.

One of Fatima’s most significant achievements involves her own community. Many young people are not encouraged to go out, as the local playing areas are seen as dangerous, especially for young girls. Fatima’s status, and the trust placed in her by parents, has enabled her to encourage children to play in a park adjacent to her neighbourhood.

Ali Oliver, Chief Executive of the Youth Sport Trust, said: “Fatima has demonstrated a huge commitment to delivering leadership to her peers and creating opportunities for them to get involved in sport which is fantastic to see.

“Fatima is a worthy winner of this special prize and truly embodies the values that the Youth Sport Trust champions.”

 

The Local People project in Brent is supported by Youth Sport Trust and funded by People’s Health Trust, using money raised by HealthHope, through The Health Lottery.

 

 

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