Black History Month

Townsend inspires students to speak up against abuse

1 Nov 2021

Everton star joins answers schoolchildren's questions about his heroes and taking the knee

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Townsend guest speaks at PL Inspires Black History Month event External Link
Black History Month: Honouring Premier League heroes
Townsend: Abuse can have a terrible impact

As part of Black History Month, Everton winger Andros Townsend spoke about his heroes and the campaign for equality to schoolchildren across Merseyside.

Six schools involved in the Premier League Inspires programme run by Everton in the Community (EitC) were invited to a virtual event to celebrate black heritage and raise awareness of how communities can create a better and more inclusive society.

Townsend took questions from more than 100 pupils from Years 9 and 10 on subjects such as the importance of Black History Month and the impact of Premier League players taking the knee.

"Taking the knee was never the end goal," Townsend says. "Maybe some people in the UK think the meaning has been lost but you never know who is watching the Premier League for the first time.

"Perhaps a kid sees us taking a knee and asks his parents why we are doing it and gets educated. It's a powerful movement."

Inspirational speakers

Other guests at the event included John Williams, head of Hate Crime Service at the Anthony Walker Foundation and the first black Detective Chief Inspector in the Merseyside Police, as well as BBC Radio Merseyside producer and iWoman chief executive officer Ngunan Adamu.

"We were privileged to be in the company of such inspirational speakers, each of whom displayed passion, resilience and integrity in their own right during difficult circumstances," said EitC's PL Inspires manager Carly Wheeler.

"We hope the young people attending the event have been inspired to adopt these qualities in their own lives and find out more about black history.

"Sometimes, we underestimate the power of a young person's voice, and events like today's gives them the platform to learn, ask questions and speak up."

See: Black History Month: Honouring Premier League icons

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