Read 11-year-old girl's award-winning short story about racism

The Bolton News: Jade Barnes likes writing – and football Jade Barnes likes writing – and football

SHE may only be 11, but talented Jade Barnes is already an award-winning writer after penning a powerful short story about racism and the beautiful game.

Jade, a pupil at St Saviour CE Primary School in Ringley, was chosen out of hundreds of entries in the Write to Unite creative writing competition, netting one of only two winning places in the 11 to 14 category.

The competition was organised by the Kick it Out and encouraged young people to illustrate how football can unite people, regardless of background, through poetry, stories, songs and other forms of writing.

Jade said: “I really enjoy writing and it is one of my favourite subjects.

“The story is about racism in football and how we can kick it out. It took me about 45 minutes to write.”

She added: “I do play a little football but not much and, although this story was a little harder to write than others I have written, it wasn’t too difficult and I entered the competition just because I enjoy writing. I like writing about everything.”

She was told by teachers she had won her age category and was invited to Leyton Orient FC in London with other prize winners, chosen by a panel including sports writer Anthony Clavane and poet and author Musa Okwonga, as well as Arsenal and England Women’s star Jordan Nobbs.

Jade said: “I was really proud and happy when I was told I had won.

“It was really good going down to Leyton Orient. My prizes included writing books, a T-shirt, and wristbands.”

St Saviour headteacher Ian Southern said: “We are delighted such a wonderful piece of work got the recognition it deserved.

“It is also pleasing such a delightful young lady has represented St Saviour’s in this positive way. We are all very proud of her.”

Musa Okwonga said: “I think it’s important that Kick It Out uses language to engage with people because football is a sport of languages — slogans, chants, banners and all the rest of it, so to be using those techniques to push the anti-racism message is really powerful.”

Segregation, discrimination, Football!   By Jade Barnes, aged 11

I shivered, in the cold, damp, eerie, weather.

I was dressed in light blue shorts and white polo-neck. As I wrapped a scarf around my neck, it slithered like a snake.

I pulled up my socks up to my knees, but they slid back down again. I started to run through the whistling wind.

Suddenly, I looked up and saw a big ring fence, below the stadium.

“Oi, you come here, you were meant to be playing 10 minutes ago,” I heard a man’s voice shout at me.

I ran into the light blue stadium, on to the beautiful green grass. I stood in the middle of the pitch. The referee stood waiting for me and threw the football at the misty air.

“Wait a minute,” the player opposite me said. I stood still in horror. The referee gestured as the player walked towards the ref.

I walked towards him as well.

But he said: “Not you, you dirty piece of filth.”

I stood drowned in depression, a tear dropping from my eye, when the manager told me that we need to talk.

I turned and smiled at him and followed him off the pitch. He told me not to worry about it, because I wouldn’t be playing any more.

I knew why, it was because of my skin. The dark colour it is.

I had already been put down because of this before. I was used to it by now. But I wouldn’t let this bring me down.

I went to the overgrown fields in the distance, and I set up my own football club.

I painted the pitch lines after cutting the beautiful green grass. Then I gathered a group of people together. I didn’t care what colour skin they had, or if they had a disability.

I didn’t care because we are all one. Now I still run the club. Sometimes we get the odd team that won’t play against us.

But we don’t mind, we just think to ourselves, they don’t know the true meaning of football. They don’t know it unites us.

So please, if this is happening to you, join a chat group, or even better a football club. And remember, the beautiful grass, is always greener on the other side.

Comments (3)

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9:41am Wed 4 Jun 14

m.nealon says...

Credit where it is due. Extremely well done Jade. You have shown great potential at such a young age. Never lose sight of your talent as you grow older. Your passion for writing clearly shines through and will be a valuable asset. You expressed so much in your story. Your parents and the rest of your family must be immensely proud of you as should your teachers. Congratulations Jade.
Credit where it is due. Extremely well done Jade. You have shown great potential at such a young age. Never lose sight of your talent as you grow older. Your passion for writing clearly shines through and will be a valuable asset. You expressed so much in your story. Your parents and the rest of your family must be immensely proud of you as should your teachers. Congratulations Jade. m.nealon
  • Score: 5

9:47am Wed 4 Jun 14

oftbewildered2 says...

Very perceptive and beautifully written - congratulations
Very perceptive and beautifully written - congratulations oftbewildered2
  • Score: 5

10:14am Thu 5 Jun 14

Puffin-Billy says...

Bolton First wrote:
Every child should be given as much help and support as possible. Well done! Keep up the good work!
How often does this happen? When did it happen? Tell us about the people who have made a fortune in England by pretending to be victims,.tell us about 'equality' under Sharia, or the 'Caste system', in Africa, or among poor people round the world.
It occurs to me that this smart little girl has been terribly abused, used and manipulated by people who should know much better.
Kick the fanatics, foreign racists, greedy, bullies, idealogues, cheats, opportunists out of football. They have ruined the game!
The citizens of the world are privileged to be able to read your words
Excellent writing by a talented child, requiring intelligence , sensitivity and observation.

Bolton First says "Tell us about the people who have made a fortune in England by pretending to be victims..."
Who are they then, ? Tell us about them.

A Definition of Racism:
1. The belief that all members of each race possess characteristics, abilities, or qualities specific to that race, especially so as to distinguish it as inferior or superior to another race or races:
2. Prejudice, discrimination, or antagonism directed against someone of a different race based on the belief that one’s own race is superior:

And
A definition of Racist:
Noun: A person who believes that a particular race is superior to another.
Adjective: Having or showing the belief that a particular race is superior to another.

What a pity that some of Bolton's politicians are pandering to them, just as we are commemorating
the beginning of WW1.
[quote][p][bold]Bolton First[/bold] wrote: Every child should be given as much help and support as possible. Well done! Keep up the good work! How often does this happen? When did it happen? Tell us about the people who have made a fortune in England by pretending to be victims,.tell us about 'equality' under Sharia, or the 'Caste system', in Africa, or among poor people round the world. It occurs to me that this smart little girl has been terribly abused, used and manipulated by people who should know much better. Kick the fanatics, foreign racists, greedy, bullies, idealogues, cheats, opportunists out of football. They have ruined the game![/p][/quote]The citizens of the world are privileged to be able to read your words Excellent writing by a talented child, requiring intelligence , sensitivity and observation. Bolton First says "Tell us about the people who have made a fortune in England by pretending to be victims..." Who are they then, ? Tell us about them. A Definition of Racism: 1. The belief that all members of each race possess characteristics, abilities, or qualities specific to that race, especially so as to distinguish it as inferior or superior to another race or races: 2. Prejudice, discrimination, or antagonism directed against someone of a different race based on the belief that one’s own race is superior: And A definition of Racist: Noun: A person who believes that a particular race is superior to another. Adjective: Having or showing the belief that a particular race is superior to another. What a pity that some of Bolton's politicians are pandering to them, just as we are commemorating the beginning of WW1. Puffin-Billy
  • Score: 0

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