WELCOME TO THE STAND UP! RASASH BLOG.
Let's take a stand against sexual violence!
Back in the Spring, one of Stand Up's Young Ambassadors, Megan, and two friends took part in the YPI at their school, representing RASASH and winning £3000 for us.
In this blog, Megan explains the process and reflects on their experience.
by Megan Lowson, Stand Up Ambassador
(pictured centre, with Iona (left) and Katie (right)
YPI stands for Youth and Philanthropy Initiative and was set up to encourage young people to consider charities and perhaps even philanthropy. We were to make up a group of at least 3 people and select a local charity to do a presentation on. The presentation could last a maximum of 10 minutes. The presentation was not only for the charity but to show team work and cooperation and social skills. After the set deadline all presentations were to be finished and presented in class. The class teacher would then pick a maximum number of two groups who would proceed to the final. After the final group has presented for their chosen charity on the day of the finals, the judge(s) then has to make a decision on the top three. However only the group in first place would win the prize of £3000 for their represented charity.
At first, the three of us were stuck for ideas on who to do the project on but it didn’t take long for me to suggest that we do RASASH as I had recently become an Ambassador for them and the £3000 grant could be of great use to the charity.
But when it came to thinking of ideas that could possible make us some sort of competition, we had none. If I were to be honest I would say that what we did was more than random but we figured it would work out better than nothing. We had one of our members draw out a story board of a situation where our young adult, female character had been married. But as time went on her partner grew more and more controlling towards her by, at first, sexually harassing her which then became rape. We didn’t want anything to graphic so we decided each time something like rape or harassment would happen that Liz, our female character, would be dragged off by her husband Steve to their room and the door would then be slammed shut. We originally had 4 days in which this happened which in totally would have been a 6-minute-long video so we decided on cutting it right down to the perfect length. Although it had an impact on the story line, we all thought that in the end it was better than before.
'Liz's Story' - The animation the team made that impressed the judges. Drawings by Iona.
We also had to do a spoken presentation to go with our animation. So we had decided that another one of the three members of our small group were to do that which I had also had a minor part in. The speech mention why rape and sexual harassment isn’t acceptable and what kind of effects it can all have on a survivor. We also managed to include the contact details of the charity and why RASASH would benefit from the money.
With it all being rehearsed we felt ready but nervous and after presenting and waiting we finally had a result. Our hard work and showing how much effort and how passionate we really were about the cause managed to win us the grant. We all hope that it will do some good for RASASH as we do feel passionately about what the charity does to help and support survivors and their loved ones.
We had chosen RASASH not only because I was an Ambassador but also because we all felt like the word needed to be spread about the charity and their amazing work.
Last but not least I would like to say that we all got some new experience and knowledge from doing the project. I felt like I had gotten more confidence speaking out in front of an audience of people. Iona had gotten more drawing experience and Katie had a chance to also improve her confidence and speech skills.
The £3000 the team won will go a long way to helping RASASH increase our reach across Highland - supporting as many survivors of sexual violence as we can. However, RASASH is a charitable voluntary organisation and we rely on donations and fundraising to help keep us afloat. If you would like to help us fundraise you can find ideas and information on how to do so here.
Welcome to the Stand Up! platform for young people's voices from across the Scottish Highlands. This site showcases quality pieces of writing on topics relating to gender-based violence from passionate young writers who want to get their voices heard.