A Carrick teenager is encouraging other young people to become involved in creative pursuits after working with UK charity Fixers.
Matt Davidson, a former pupil of Ulidia Integrated College, created a video with the help of the charity in a bid to inspire his peers to take up Performing Arts.
Fixers supports young people aged 16-25 to tackle any issue that matters to them, however they choose.
Matt said: “I was always quite reserved growing up. I never really had any friends at school and was often too shy to talk to people.
“But then my mum introduced me to a local drama school. For the first time, I felt confident in myself and had a feeling of self-worth. It gave me the motivation to want to be an actor.”
Discovering Fixers via Facebook, Matt approached the charity for help in creating a short film showing how performing arts can boost self-esteem.
“Hopefully it will inspire more young people to get involved in creative pursuits so they too can enjoy the benefits like I have,” said Matt, who is currently studying Performing Arts at Belfast Metropolitan College.
Matt’s video, which was filmed entirely at Downshire School, is available on the Fixers website at www.fixers.org.uk.
The charity is behind a number of other successful projects in the borough, including a recent campaign between young people and Translink over discounted fares.
Fixers Young People’s Co-ordinator for Northern Ireland, Chris Pollock, indicated the organisation is focused on addressing the issues that matter to young people in a positive way.
“Since we started in Northern Ireland last year, we’ve been involved in about 40 projects and worked with over 500 young people,” he added.
“There are a whole range of issues we have worked on, from road safety, anti-drugs, body image, sectarianism and integrated education.
“At the moment we’re working on a ‘fix’ with a group from Carrickfergus YMCA that will focus on the positive side of the town and combat any of the negative stories that have appeared recently.
“We are still working out what form this would take - -it might be something like cleaning up an area of the town, like Love Lane, or some other sort of positive gesture.”