Jack Petchey Foundation
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Stories we are proud of

Teen wins Jack Petchey Award after discussing difficulties with self-harm and autism

Sabrina Gardiner, 19, has been volunteering at Exposure for nearly 3 years, writing articles and producing cartoons. However, she has recently opened up about her understanding of autism and self-harm in her article entitled ‘Creative Solution to Self Harm’ – and won a Jack Petchey Achievement Award for doing so.

“I think people self-harm because they feel they can't find any other way to deal with their anger,” Sabrina says. “I'm now learning how to channel my anger into something positive instead - like writing a short story or drawing a picture detailing my experiences… since I wrote my article on the subject, I've now turned away from self-harming all together - there are better ways to cope with your anger than that.”

Sabrina’s writing has released her burdens but also given others an opportunity to confront their own. “Her work has had a positive impact within the office and with other young people…They feel more confident sharing their experiences, which are similar to hers”, claims Florence Codjoe – Development Officer at Exposure.

Exposure, which established in 1996, operates in Haringey. This youth media enterprise enables disadvantaged young people to gain valuable experience in the media industry. Although Expose started as a magazine, it has also moved into other creative fields such as advertising, photography and film.

Sabrina’s £200 Achievement Award grant was spent on the purchase of a new colour printer for the office. The previous printer would only allow the volunteers to print in black and white. Therefore any presentations, which involved displaying their work to a group, could only be shown on the computer.

“Winning has filled me with intense pride, because of the recognition I'm getting for my positive achievements,” Sabrina says.

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