Young Identity has been short listed for the UK’S Largest Diversity Awards!
Young Identity from Manchester has been short listed for the Community Organisation for Age at the
National Diversity Awards 2015.
Charities and Role Models from across the UK will gather at the breathtaking Anglican Cathedral on September 18th 2015 for The National Diversity Awards.
The Best of British Diversity will flock to Liverpool to celebrate the outstanding achievements of those who have demonstrated their devotion to enhancing equality, diversity and inclusion in today’s society.
Over 20,000 nominations and votes were received this year, paying tribute to grass root communities nationwide.
Young Identity began its life in Moss Side, Manchester in 2006. Poets Shirley May and Ali Gadema founded YI following the completion of Word Cup 2006, a project they were commissioned to deliver by Apples and Snakes, the UK’s leading poetry organisation. After coaching a team of young poets to perform at a national slam poetry competition in Warwick-where they represented Manchester, the group returned to Manchester so inspired that they managed to persuade Shirley and Ali to continue to work with them by turning up at Shirley’s workplace with their notepads and pens and demanding a workshop!
9 years on (and many, many working hours later) Young Identity, operating under the umbrella of Commonword, the leading writing development organisation based in Manchester, providing opportunities for new and aspiring adult writers to develop their talent and potential, stands as a testament to the great things that investing in the voice of young people can accomplish.
In the past 3 years alone, over 400 young people have participated in Young Identity’s programme of free workshops and events. Their members volunteer on the project, drive the project through a Steering Group and are empowered to progress into careers in a range of fields.
Speaking about being shortlisted for an NDA Award, Shirley May, Project Director said:
“Young Identity works tirelessly to develop and deliver a project that is reflective of the diversity of Manchester. We pride ourselves on being a genuinely safe place for young people aged 13-25 irrespective of race, gender, disability, sexual orientation or religion. We believe that fostering this inclusive environment in our work place, workshops and events is not only the responsibility of Young Identity project management but also the responsibility of our participants. Therefore, we emphasise the importance of not only being tolerant of other peoples’ identities and characteristics but actually embracing difference as this is what helps us develop into empathic, well-rounded citizens.”
The prestigious black tie event is definitely one to mark down on your calendar and provides recognition for excellence regardless of race, faith, religion, gender, identity, sexual orientation, age, disability and culture.
Microsoft will be just one of the brands supporting a skyfall of diversity talent alongside Barclays, The Army, Financial Ombudsman Service, Liverpool City Council, Penna, Mouchel, MI5, PwC, ThoughtWorks, Transport for London and The Open University.
Barclays commented ‘We understand the commercial relevance of diversity and are therefore proud to sponsor the National Diversity Awards as thespirit of these awards aligns with the way we do business. We would like to congratulate all of the nominees and winners this year and wish them every success.’
TV personality Brian Dowling also expressed his delight in returning to host the ceremony, He said: ‘I am so excited to host The National Diversity Awards again! I have witnessed the awards go from strength to strength since its formation and I am always truly taken back by the humbling and uplifting stories of all the nominees and award winners. I can’t wait to get on stage for what is sure to be another extraordinary evening!’
Designed to highlight the country’s most inspirational and selfless people, the NDA’s are supported by the likes of Brian Blessed, Adam Hills and Ade Adepitan amongst many.
Comedian and actor Stephen Fry said, ‘Four years on and The National Diversity Awards are continuing to have a positive impact across the whole of the UK. The awards have grown, and with it, so has the vast array of unsung diversity heroes being recognised nationwide.
It is crucial that we challenge discrimination head on, and the NDA’s unite those that dedicate their lives to the cause. Long may this continue’. He added.
Previous winners include Huddersfield based Disability Theatre Group Shabang!, Freedom Fighting Refugee Aderonke Apata, and domestic violence campaigner Karen Ingala Smith.
Internationally acclaimed contemporary artist, Rachel looked back on her time winning the positive role model award in 2013 “It truly was a tremendously uplifting emotional evening, and I don’t think there was a single person in the room who would disagree with that! The evening represented everything that is good about our society”.
Rachel went on to receive the award for battling successfully against a potentially life limiting illness to produce works of art that are applauded worldwide.
She continued “Thank you from the bottom of my heart for creating an exceptional night, the challenges ahead are still enormous, but with the ND Award in my hand, I will journey forward with renewed hope and ambition to try to do so much more, and in my efforts, hopefully I will, in some way, contribute to making the vital cultural shift within our society.”
To view a full list of nominees please visit www.nationaldiversityawards