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Curb conference helps students build bridges

Teamwork: students from several schools shared their feelings on bias, negativity and division (Photograph supplied)

School students have been “building bridges and empowering change” after attending a two-day leadership conference organised by Citizens Uprooting Racism in Bermuda.

The charity created the programme in collaboration with Bermuda High School, inviting almost 50 pupils from a host of private and public schools to attend.

Stacey-Lee Williams, the executive director of Curb, said participants were eager to “address unfair perspectives and shift storylines that create division and negativity among Bermuda’s young people”.

She said that the theme, “Building Bridges, Empowering Change”, was enthusiastically embraced by the students, who eagerly and honestly shared their experiences — both their own internalised biases as well as when they were victims of bias.

The sessions fostered rich, in-depth conversations in a protected environment between young people who might not normally interact.

The students were addressed by American keynote speaker Mary Louise Patterson, a lifelong activist and editor of Letters by Langston Hughes.

According to Ms Williams, Ms Patterson inspired students with her remarkable story of fighting for justice, with attendees expressing that it was an honour to be in the presence of someone who had lived the history they learn about in their studies.

She added: “The success of this conference demonstrates the power of collaboration and the desire of students to be agents of change.

“We are thrilled with the results and the strong desire for similar events in the future.”

Carol Swainson, the head of BHS, was equally pleased with the conference.

She said: “The collaboration between Curb and BHS was an overwhelming success and we are committed to making this an annual event that is hosted alternatively between public and private schools.

“Our collective goal is to equip all students in Bermuda with the knowledge and tools they need to succeed.”

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Published November 18, 2023 at 4:00 pm (Updated November 19, 2023 at 3:01 pm)

Curb conference helps students build bridges

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