Arjun’s anti-racism triumph

Year 7 pupil Arjun Arunkumar’s poetry won first prize in a national competition which aims at stamping out racism in football and more widely in society.

Arjun’s trilogy, entitled Tolerance, Equality and Diversity, took first prize in the Year 7–9 creative writing category in the Show Racism the Red Card National School Competition.

He was presented with his award by England football manager Gareth Southgate at a ceremony at Leicester City’s King Power Stadium hosted by BBC sports presenter Manish Bhasin.

During the day, the winners and their families saw an exhibition of their entries and were given a tour of the stadium, including the opportunity to have their photograph taken with the Premier League trophy won by Leicester in 2016. They also had the chance to get involved with practising some football skills with Richard Braithwaite, aka Mr Silky Skills.

""Guests included players from Leicestershire County Cricket Club, Leicester City FC Ladies and Leicester Riders basketball club and well-known figures from the world of football including Dave Bassett, Anwar Uddin, Jason Lee, Frank Clark, Scott McGleish, Luther Blissett, Brendon Batson and Dave Bennett.

& lt;p> The competition was run by Show Racism the Red Card (SRtRC), an anti-racism charity that uses professional footballers as role models to educate young people about the dangers of racism in football and in society. As well as creative writing, it featured categories for anti-racism themed artwork and film.

""The competition is supported by the National Union of Teachers (NUT), UNISON, Unite the Union, the Professional Footballers Association (PFA), the Football Association (FA), Durham County Council and the International Federation of Professional Footballers (FIFPro) and Potts Print UK.

Thanking Leicester City for hosting the ceremony, Show Racism the Red Card's Chief Executive, Ged Grebby, said: “SRtRC would like to congratulate all the winners of the 2017 School Competition on their achievement.”

""Arjun’s poem, Tolerance, ends:

We must stand together and act as one.
If we stop racism, humanity has won.

The final stanza of Diversity is:

Which dress will humanity wear
The first dress with much flair
Or the second, with colours one
Weak, dull and liked by none?

""Here is his poem, Equality, in full:< /p>

The river burbles through the land
It ripples past its golden banks.
It flows to the sea by the setting sun,
Carving its path by acting as one.

A road, too, goes through the land.
It carries people through the sand.
But near its source, it splits in two –
A great invisible line it drew

""One road was higher, full of light.
Those who walked it had more might.
Yet both roads sank into the ground
Those who walked it were never found.

Years, years and years have passed.
A new path emerged at last.
Will it be split roads or a strong stream?
Will humanity split at its seams?