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Attleborough Academy pupil picks up Stronger Than Hate award for poem about prejudice



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An Attleborough secondary school pupil has picked up a national award after penning a poem about how communities can overcome prejudice.

Elizabeth Stickland, a Year 9 student at Attleborough Academy, was awarded first prize in the UK category of the Stronger Than Hate Challenge, landing her school thousands of pounds in grant money.

As part of the challenge – which was organised by Discovery Education and Hollywood director Steven Spielberg’s USC Shoah Foundation – students from across the UK, US and Canada were tasked with submitting a creative project showing why united communities are stronger.

Elizabeth with the poem that secured a £5,000 grant for her school. Picture by Mecha Morton.
Elizabeth with the poem that secured a £5,000 grant for her school. Picture by Mecha Morton.

Fourteen-year-old Elizabeth first found out about the competition through her citizenship teacher, Miss Murray, when she was in Year 8.

“I was against entering the competition because I’ve always been really shy,” she said.

“I left it for a few days before finally deciding to enter it. “

After impressing the US-based judges with her poem, which is untitled, Elizabeth was awarded first prize in the UK category of the competition, securing a £5,000 grant and an iPad for her school in Norwich Road.

“I was shocked when I found out I had come first,” she said.

“Winning something like this for the school was kind of weird, actually – I’ve always been a shy, unnoticeable student, but I’m glad I overcame that enough to enter the competition.

“It was amazing to give back to a school that’s done so much for me.”

Her poem addresses a host of social issues, from teenage mental health and same-sex relationships to racism and conflicts across the globe – before issuing a closing plea to “stop hate”.

“The theme of the competition was hate and how we could potentially eradicate or minimise it,” said Elizabeth.

“I’d always felt quite strongly about hate. It’s so difficult to fully comprehend what is going on in someone else’s life and to torment someone because of the community they belong to is just horrific.”



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