09 10

March 2014

East Anglia
Hackney Citizen
Ameena Matthews - Inspiring change in the community!
BSix and Schools

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International Women’s Day celebrations at BSix Brooke House Sixth Form College

Ameena Matthews - Inspiring change in the community!

Muatta Books, Ancient Future and the BCitizens of BSix College presented an evening of powerful discussion and debate with inspirational leader Ameena Matthews held at BSix Brooke House Sixth Form College on Wednesday 12th March. The College theatre was packed with interested students, parents, college staff and governors, representatives from Hackney Citizens as well as many people from the local area. Ameena is on a tour of the UK, visiting organisations in some of our major cities to talk about the incredible work that she does with young people involved in gangs in Chicago.

Ameena Matthews - Inspiring change in the community!

Her work is as a community activist for peace building and social change. Since 2006, Ameena has been a member of the American based organisation called Ceasefire; their roles include working to mediate disputes between gangs and to try to stop violence through the use of outreach and educational work. Ameena has helped organise over 10 Peace Summits, has mediated over 65 conflicts, responded to over 49 shootings and worked with over 75 high risk participants. Ameena was the winner of Black Girls Rock 2013, The Freedom from Fear Award 2013 and the Betty Shabazz Award 2012. She is also in the documentary The Interrupters 2009.

Ameena Matthews - Inspiring change in the community!

The panel discussion was led by Ameena along with our own youth leaders: students from BSix, Cardinal Pole School and Tech City Stars apprentices. Vice Principal of BSix, Denise Roulston expressed what a privilege it was to meet Ameena and how her work and attitude is an inspiration to all of us! Most significantly, the students who attended said that they were proud to be part of a college and a community that is taking positive steps towards social change and through collaborative work building an understanding of the collective responsibility that needs to take place to reduce crime and unemployment.