Evening Telegraph (First Edition)
Fierce girls fighting
Girl group have put together animation
A GIRL group in Dundee who are leading a campaign to tackle peer sexual abuse and challenge sexual harassment will launch an animation they have helped to create at Dundee Contemporary Arts (DCA) today.
The video, which features animated characters, details how safe spaces can be set up in a school setting.
The event, which is free to attend, will also provide an opportunity for people to hear about the work of the campaign and to meet some of the young women from the Oor Fierce Girls group.
NSPCC Scotland, The Young Women’s Movement and Dundee City Council have been working with the team since June 2021 to create a tailored campaign to help young women understand what a healthy relationship is and where to go if they need advice or support.
Tamsyn, a senior pupil at a school in Dundee, said: “Safe spaces in schools are crucial for creating a safe and positive environment.
“I am so proud of us Oor Fierce Girls for creating such a push for these spaces to be installed in schools.
“The animation about safe spaces has to be one of the most rewarding aspects of the campaign and it will hopefully bring many more on board with the idea of having safe spaces in school.”
Euan Graham, local campaigns officer for NSPCC Scotland, added: “It’s been so inspiring to work with this talented group of young women.
“They’ve generously shared their experiences, views and ideas to help us to create some incredibly useful toolkits and this new video to raise awareness of this important issue.
“It’s crucial that young people understand what a healthy relationship feels and looks like, and they have someone they trust to turn to if something happens that makes them feel unhappy or uncomfortable.
“Peer sexual abuse can have a devastating and long-lasting impact on someone’s life, so it’s vital that young people understand the issues around consent and that they can say no at any time.”
The Oor Fierce Girls group have created three toolkits – one for parents and carers, one for professionals who work with young people and one for young people themselves – to provide practical guidance on how to start a conversation regarding a healthy relationship.
They have also produced a tip guide for professionals on setting up a safe space for young women and girls.
It includes working with young people on what they want in a safe space and creating a quiet space which young people can access without being seen.
It also mentions ensuring the room is bright and comfortable and emphasises the importance of having an approachable and trained member of staff in the room, as well as refreshments and tissues available.
Further tips include having a timetable for the room and a room agreement.
Elena Soper, national programmes manager for The Young Women’s Movement, said: “We’re delighted to be able to celebrate these incredible young women and showcase this fantastic new animated film.
“Oor Fierce Girls have dedicated a lot of time to this cause and worked incredibly hard over the past few years to create many useful resources to help promote healthy relationships.
“We hope this video will be a useful tool for schools to help them to set up safe spaces for young women, where they can talk about their relationships with someone who cares and won’t judge them.”
The project was first set up following an investigation into sexual harassment in Scottish schools carried out by the YWCA’s Young Women Lead committee in
2018, which revealed that young people were most likely to turn to the internet or their friends for advice on sex, and almost half of students and teaching staff surveyed said that the current curriculum did not adequately cover the issue of consent.
In the same year, the NSPCC published a report on peer sexual abuse. It revealed that Childline had held more than 3,000 counselling sessions with young people across the UK about this issue in the previous year, with more than 95% of the contacts being aged 12 or older.
They talked about it happening in school, parks, parties and other people’s houses, as well as online.
The event at the DCA will kick off at 5.30pm and will last until 6.30pm, with tickets able to be booked via Eventbrite.