Journey to Justice

Celebration at the House of Lords

February 25th 2015

Hosted by our patron Lord Herman Ouseley and supporter Lord Jeremy Beecham

Funded by Big Lottery Fund and Land Securities

With huge thanks to everyone.

Students, staff and volunteers from George Mitchell School, Leyton led their guests through two hours of presentations, music and poetry. We were celebrating the first two months of a Journey to Justice course focused on global human rights movements, the music of social protest and understanding social change. Students: met campaigners from Movement for Change, researched Soweto, Ruby Bridges, Malala Yousafzai and the Burston School Strike; attended a preview of Selma and The Scottsboro Boys and planned their own campaigns.  These will focus on gangs and the lack of activities for young people locally and on the involvement of students in the school exclusion process.

The JtoJ poetry group created stunning work in response to discussions about justice which they read at the House of Lords and is now part of the Journey to Justice travelling exhibition.

Click here to download the poems

Students invited guests at the HOL to talk about their own journeys to justice including: meeting Martin Luther King; bring wrongfully arrested by a racist police officer; coming out as gay and running a campaign against FGM.  It was an extraordinary, powerful night for everyone.

Click here to download the full programme.

‘I was so moved and inspired by the poetry and journeys against injustice that everyone had faced. It was eye-opening for me to see young people express themselves in such a way, they really are something. It made me reflect on my own journey and my own struggles with social injustice and the changes I want to see in the world. It showed me that I have no excuses to sit back.’ (Aminah Khan)

 ‘I’ve learned that if I believe in something I shouldn’t give up no matter what the challenge is.’  (Krusal Vara, student at George Mitchell School) ‘I want to know more now, make an effort and succeed.’ (Jacky Yenga-Matmu). The group say they are more aware of injustice, have made new friends, can speak in public with more ease and have found issues which are personal and real to work on. The Journey to Justice poetry club gave them an outlet for their inner thoughts and feelings and some parents say they are more confident at home.

‘The project has certainly changed their hearts and mind.  They want to be a part of positive change’ (Parul Motin, teacher)

Visit the George Mitchell Journey to Justice Blog Spot for details of the pilot course we are running:

watch a short film made by Winstan Whitter about our Leyton pilot.

Photographs by Bethany Hunt and Aziz Rahman