This National Hate Crime Awareness Week, and as Tower Hamlets Council launched it’s No Place for Hate campaign, we want to celebrate our Mile End Youth Committee’s efforts to ‘Wash Out Hate’ in their local area.
When Fahim, Nazmus and their friends realised they had had enough of seeing hateful graffiti on their way to school, they put a plan in action with Spotlight youth workers, including Head Youth Worker at Mile End Nahim. Together, they created the ‘Wash Out Hate Project’ to make sure no-one would have to put up with messages of hate in their community.
This was put together as part of the BSBT (Building a Stronger Britain Together) programme and London Youth’s East London Leaders programme, which involved the group heading to the Channel 4 studios earlier this year to bid for, and subsequently win, £600 work of funding.
Looking back on the project pitching event, youth worker Nahim said: “The ownership from the young people made me stand still, and made me look back at them from a different angle”.
With that funding under their belts, they invested in buckets, brushes and a jet washer and set to work.
Their project didn’t stay locally-known for long, gaining the attention of massive organisations such as Ipsos Mori and M&C Saatchi (who assisted in making the film above). The group even solidified their TV careers in a film by BBC Young Reporters, which recently graced the front page of BBC London News – watch it here
When interviewed by Poplar HARCA, leader Fahim expressed his commitment to making his community a more positive place, saying “I didn’t want me or anybody else to see those negative messages.”
He also was keen to differentiate between hateful graffiti and normal graffiti, as he said to BBC Young Reporters: “We don’t tackle art, we tackle hate.”
With the project coming to an end, we couldn’t be more proud of what they have achieved! Check out Poplar HARCA’s article about the experience here