Rife Gives Me Life

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Starting here at Rife last October, our editor asked us to note a few things that we want to achieve in the next six months in this role.

Here are a few things that were on my list:

  • Being able to produce, shoot and edit my own film
  • Understanding Bristol as a city more and the social structure that underpins its culture
  • Being comfortable and confident with leading workshops
  • Becoming more confident and outward-facing

I’m sitting here on the other end with all of the above and so much more to boast about. First and foremost, working with a team of inspiring and supportive peers and mentors.

Cai and Grace, my siblings – we have learned to speak to each other without even opening our mouths. Holly, the voice of reason and always there for moral support – not to mention joining us on the perks of our job, running to the studio for leftover brownies or hopping on a Ferryboat in the sunshine for a spot of filming. Both of our fairy godmothers – Roseanna, always there to help pull things together and Vanessa always there to fix the finishing touches we don’t even think about. And uncle Nikesh literally always there 25/8/366. The uncle can’t be mad at you but you never want to disappoint him.

The amount of time we spend together is a testament to the bond of our cute Rife family (the family you actually like). Before coming into this job, I was a lone-ranger, happy to get bits done with my headphones in and everyone drowned out, now I’m sheepishly being tossed into the world without my right hand fam.

I came into this as a music journalist and now I am a writer, with a distinct writing voice. No, really. Friends have told me they can literally hear my voice in their heads when they read my articles. It’s mad.

Who knew we’d come such a long way from our awkward first few days, making Rife Up Your Life, to running through Watershed’s corridors the moment we hear there’s leftover food and comforting each other through coming to terms with our problematic faves latest offensive tweet.

Nikesh always told us to make sure our social media channels weren’t too in-jokey but between me and you, our office banter > your office banter. No arguments. We were bribed with pizza to get our Twitter followers up to 2,800 and we rose to the challenge. From YouTube hip-hop b2b sets with our editor, to discovering his secret stash of cocoa butter, Cai, Grace and I have had an abundance of giggles.

The past six months have been immensely empowering and has built me up with the confidence to be able to call myself a leader. I went from being the token music writer to the queen of social issues. I’ve called Bristol out for slavery and then again for being multicultural but not culturally integrated. I’ve made a video that I pitched and then tried to take back but had to run with, despite six weeks of dwindling. I’ve facilitated youth-engagement sessions and written about what I learned from the group and best of all I’ve made an extended family for life in the process.

Support more young people to have their voices heard

Rife is Watershed‘s online magazine created for young people, by young people.

We offer paid internships and publish work by young writers, photographers, illustrators, and filmmakers from all sorts of backgrounds, helping them get into creative careers. Rife has reached over 8,000 young people through our workshops, over 220 young people have made stuff for Rife on topics ranging from mental health to identity to baked beans, and last year, over 200,000 people visited our website.

In these complex and uncertain times hearing from and supporting young people who are advocating for social change and contributing fresh perspectives has never been so important. 

Through supporting Rife you can ensure that this important work continues and that more young people have their voices heard.