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No Barriers at Home has been inspiring young people across London and the Republic of Ireland. Students have discovered footballers, past and present, who have challenged barriers in their lives including gender inequality, racism, mental health and disability to achieve success on and off the pitch. This project was initially designed as a celebration of the UEFA EURO 2020 tournament, with one No Barriers Champion for each of the host cities.

Despite the postponement of the Euros, young people have taken part in home learning activities to showcase what they have learned and join the No Barriers Community page: a way of virtually coming together and celebrating diversity. Young people have been learning about the London Champion, Tyrone Mings, who spent part of his childhood in a homeless shelter and faced racism whilst playing a match in Bulgaria in 2019. Participants have been writing poems about his story and even designing new England kits! Others have written blog posts as Dublin Champion, Stephanie Roche, imagining what she must have felt when she found out she was nominated for a Puskás Award, and expressing their thoughts on gender inequality in football.

Now, No Barriers at Home culminates with the Create Your Own Champion Challenge, our own shadow UEFA EURO 2020 tournament. The Euros would have taken place between 12 June and 12 July, and as well as celebrating the host cities and their Champions in this time, young people have the exciting opportunity to create their own No Barriers Champion card, celebrating someone who has made a positive impact in their community.
No Barriers Champions can be anyone who has challenged barriers and inspires others. This could be someone tackling barriers locally, for example by running a food bank or being a key worker, a teacher who helps people to overcome challenges, inspiring young people to learn and explore new ideas, or even a family member or friend who helps other people.
To take part, participants can use this how-to guide, which includes what you should tell us about your Champion. Once they have designed their card, participant’s guardians can head to www.big-ideas.org/athome to upload it. It will then be added to the No Barriers Community page and shared with other young people from around the UK and the Republic of Ireland!

Who will you nominate?