Ann Beatty portrait

Written by Ann Beatty

Chief Executive, The Steve Sinnott Foundation

There is an urgent imperative for young people to learn about themselves, where they come from, their sense of place in their community and the wider world and most importantly their human rights. Do you have human rights? Do others have the same human rights as you do? Do you actually have human rights in your school?

The recent events of a school girl being assaulted in a school by police officers, the many wars across the world and the ways in which we see people being treated differently because of their skin colour, gender or social status has shocked many, but we know that many people experience discrimination on a daily basis in more subtle ways. 

Wherever you find yourself in the world there are different challenges in the provision of education. For us working in Cuba and Haiti brings different challenges in providing access to education than our work in The Gambia and Sierra Leone or the U.K, but we are all connected and have much to learn from each other. As a team Covid reminded us of that connection in many ways.

We believe in the potential of education to invest in each young person to flourish and as an investment in a more inclusive world in the future.  We want students to choose the topic that’s important to them right now and develop their ideas through creative arts, spoken word, painting, drawing, mime, drama, photography, or any creative medium they choose.

Working in partnership with the National Education Union and the Gambia Teachers Union we have produced a resource pack for schools Creating Change – The World I Want to Live In. We have launched a competition inviting students to give their voice to the topics that are important to them right now in this moment. We hope that students and educators will find the resource useful, return to the resource pack in the future and develop their own ideas.

You can register your interest here and download the free resource pack:

We hope that this creative approach to learning will cultivate healthier ways of having conversations about the topics that matter to young people; allow them to relate to one another and to society, whilst enhancing their wellbeing, promoting inclusion and encouraging them to engage with and find solutions to the many social challenges of today.

The deadline for competition entries is 1st June.

If you have any questions, please contact