My Story - Young people's storytelling project details life 20 years after the Good Friday Agreement

 Patrick Heathwood with a copy of My Story. Pictures by Hugh Russell

A storytelling project that allows young people to tell Stormont leaders the reality and challenges of life in their communities, 20 years on from the Good Friday Agreement has been launched at Stormont.

Family support charity Quaker Service launched a book and film compiling the participants’ first-hand experiences along with personal stories by women and asylum seekers at the assembly. Director of Quaker Service Janette McKnight said the charity, which works with marginalised and excluded teenagers and families, wanted to give a platform to people not often heard by officials and decision-makers.

“The families and young people we work with tell us that violence, poverty and pain are still an everyday experience, 20 years on from the Good Friday Agreement,” she said.

“We wanted to create a space where they could tell their own stories, frankly and freely, to decision-makers. Often it is young people and women who bear the brunt of the legacy of the Troubles and today’s social problems yet are least likely to be heard by those with power and influence to make a change.

“We also wanted to include people who are newly arrived in Northern Ireland, often from conflict and crisis elsewhere – again we don’t often hear first-hand from asylum seekers and refugees what it’s like to live in our communities. We were delighted to work with Homeplus NI, which supports asylum seekers and refugees, and Belfast film-making charity ESC in making this project a reality”. 

  Muhammad Ali

 My Story is launched at Stormont

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