Madison Haley talks anti-racism with Brighton students
Madison Haley, Women’s First Team forward, visited a group of secondary school students to talk about discrimination and anti-racism.
She was joined by a class of secondary school girls from Brighton Aldridge Community Academy (BACA), who were invited to a workshop at the American Express Elite Football Performance Centre in Lancing.
The girls from BACA took part in the interactive workshop before having a Q&A session with Madison and a group of Under-18 academy scholars.
Madison, a new arrival to Melissa Phillips’ squad this summer, was given her first taste of working with the BHAFC Foundation as part of our work in the Premier League’s No Room For Racism campaign.
The Premier League’s No Room For Racism campaign aims to remind fans in the UK and around the world of the clear message that discrimination will not be tolerated in football or wider society, as well as demonstrating how diversity across all areas of the game makes it stronger.
Madison spoke with the group about the importance of anti-racism in society, and how football can play a part in tackling discrimination.
“I think showing solidarity against racism is really helpful, it keeps the issue in people’s minds and shows people that football won’t stand for that kind of behaviour,” Madison said.
“Football is one of the most diverse sports on earth. Just in our team alone we have so many different nationalities represented, and fans from every country watch the game.
“So football can have a major role to play in fighting discrimination, because it is a huge platform that reaches so many people from all walks of life.”
Madison also highlighted how crucial it is to teach children about discrimination from an early age.
“Workshops like these are fantastic because they teach young people about important things like recognising abuse, noticing biases, and being a strong ally,” she said.
“Allyship is super important, it’s everyone’s responsibility to do something about discrimination.
“It’s so key to get this message out to young people while they’re still forming opinions, and by educating children we can hopefully stop discrimination in adults before it even forms, nip it in the bud.”
Madison was joined at the session by a group of Albion academy scholars.
The scholars – Alfie Mansell, Layth Gulzar, Nehemiah Oriola, Joshua Lewis, Joe Belmont, Ronnie Gorman, and Matthew Hayden – joined in with the workshop and answered the girls’ questions about life as footballers.
Rob Josephs, Education and Employability Manager at the BHAFC Foundation, was grateful to Madison for her help.
“I think that workshops like we had today can be really powerful tools in shaping how young people see the world,” Rob said.
“It’s so important that we’re out there reaching children at an early age, opening them up to new perspectives and learning about the real-world issues they’ll have to face as adults.
“I’m so pleased that Madison was able to come down and talk to the students.”