Teesside Trailblazers was a partnership between Big Ideas and Middlesbrough Football Club Academy. From March – May 2022, Big Ideas worked with a group of U18s players at the Academy who wanted to take their experiences of tackling racism as a team to young people across Teesside to make their classrooms, schools and communities more inclusive. The programme was funded by The National Lottery Community Fund, DCMS, The Virgin Money Foundation and the #iwill campaign, which supports young people’s access to high quality social action opportunities.
“To me racial justice is a term used to describe a fair community, a fair world where there isn’t any racism. Or if there is racism, it is tackled properly.”
Big Ideas worked with the players to create two live racial justice youth summits. Over 3,200 young people in primary and secondary schools across Teesside joining the summit from 35 schools with the Teesside Trailblazer team live on location in schools in Middlesbrough, Darlington, Hartlepool and Stockton-on-Tees. These boys’ desire to take their stories and what they have learned to empower other young people through the universal appeal of football, was at the heart of the Teesside Trailblazers project. Watch the boys’ tell their story here.
“Football’s a sport everyone loves. Football can be a big platform to show and teach people what is right and what is wrong.”