‘The Readiness’ and Anti-Bullying Week


Earlier this year, the UK spent a week raising awareness of bullying during National Anti-Bullying Week. Year 9 and 11 students in Bristol made a brilliant short film in response to bullying, in this modern retelling of Shakespeare’s ‘Hamlet’.

Bullying is something that no-one should ever have to experience…

Bullying is something that no-one should ever have to experience, but unfortunately an alarming amount of people do. Statistically, within the U.K, 1.5 million young people and children have experienced bullying- that’s as high as 50%. That means most young people have either been affected by, or know someone who has been affected by bullying.

Bullying can take many different shapes and forms. It can range from receiving hateful comments in person and online, being excluded and ignored by peers, the sharing of humiliating stories, pictures and videos or being harassed or attacked.

It’s important to remember that bullying is never your fault. However, bullying can still have a profound impact on your self-esteem and emotional well being. But most importantly remember you are not alone. There are always people you can turn to that can help advice you on what to do and provide you with the help and support you need. Talk to your friends, a trusted adult and get in contact with Childline and Off the Record.

Watershed and Bristol Old Vic Theatre School worked with Merchants Academy to create a short film during a one-week work experience placement. Year 9s and Year 11s came together and through a series of workshops and film screenings, they came up with the story of their film inspired by William Shakespeare’s ‘Hamlet’. They found the themes within Hamlet ones they could relate to, and wanted to explore these within their own short film.

Within both the short film created by Merchant’s Academy and Shakespeare’s play, the protagonists are confronted with a barrage of hurtful situations that forces them to ask themselves— do they continue suffering or do they stand up and take action?

Watch ‘The Readiness’ to find out:

If you’re aged 13-17 and  interested in getting involved in filmmaking, then check out Creative Youth Network’s Filmmaking Course or if you’re 24 and below, apply for Random Act’s Calling the Shots.

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.