Local teenager makes ‘Time to Stand’ against bullying and racism

November 26, 2018

A Dromintee teenager who has himself been a victim of hate crime and bullying is the star of a short film launched this month which tackles the issues of bullying and racism in the classroom.

Budding actor, Patrick Roe, a Year 12 St.Paul’s High School pupil, stars in the ‘Time to Stand’ film which was launched by Cinemagic as part of Anti-Bullying Week 2018 (12th -16th November) and was shown in a special screening to schools at the Odyssey Cinema in Belfast.

The ‘Time to Stand’ film will be used by schools and youth projects across the Urban Village areas and will be also be available on a regional basis.The Urban Villages Initiative, led by The Executive Office (TEO) is designed to support good relations and develop thriving places in areas of Belfast and Derry with a history of deprivation and community tension. 

Some of the scenes in the production hit home for 15 year old Patrick, in particular a graffiti hate-crime incident which mirrors the distress he and his mum Briege went through after their home was daubed with racist graffiti in a vicious hate crime last September. The sickening racist slur was condemned throughout the community and friends and neighbours rallied around the family to remove the offensive graffiti. Patrick’s mum revealed at the time that her son had experienced various forms of racism over the years, but none as sinister as the graffiti attack. 

Speaking to UTV Live after the launch of the film last week, the young actor admitted that the grafitti crime had ‘hit hard at the time’ but he said he is ‘over it’ now and ‘better than he was before it.’.  The resilient teenager told the programme he felt it was important for someone like him who has experienced bullying and racism “to step up and show people that you can do it and you can prevail from things like this.”

Lee Kane, Regional Coordinator, Northern Ireland Anti-Bullying Forum (NIABF), described the short film as “exceptional” and said he hoped the production would encourage adults to take the opportunity “to talk to their children about how we treat others, remembering that while we don’t have to be friends with everyone we meet, showing respect to all helps foster a safe and inclusive anti-bullying culture in our schools and communities.”

Linsey Farrell, Director of the Urban Villages Initiative said ‘Time to Stand’ is a fantastic resource for schools and youth organisations and she added that, as the Racial Equality Champion for the Executive Office, “I am delighted that the Racial Equality Sub Group were able to support Cinemagic in the development of this film. I would like to thank everyone involved in producing the film and congratulate them on what they have achieved.”