Ivan Toney joined Brentford Community Sports Trust and the Premier League to take part in a recent classroom workshop to discuss equality and discrimination. The Brentford striker visited Rabbsfarm Primary School in West Drayton to take part in a No Room For Racism session to talk about his career and dealing with discrimination.
"As footballers, you have a duty to be coming across a certain way, to people that look up to you," he said. "And I feel like, here today, giving them some information on how to deal with certain things is key for them, as they're growing up. Whether they become a footballer or whatever they become.
"The amount of people that watch the Premier League and are involved in football, if they see certain things and hear certain things, it's just going to echo and more people are going to know about it. So, hopefully it's an important talking point that is going the right way to stop things like discrimination."
Ivan’s visit took place just weeks before an incident which took place at yesterday’s Premier League game away at Everton where his mum, and Rico Henry’s mum were both subjected to racist abuse.
The Premier League has worked with clubs to create No Room For Racism educational resources, which are used by our national community programmes and across the Academy Education and Player Care network. The teaching materials have been downloaded by more than 5,750 primary school teachers, engaging more than 170,000 pupils covering topics such as the importance of diversity, allyship and tackling online hate.
"The sessions help the children to understand, respect, and actually appreciate each other's differences," said Natasha Smith, Rabbsfarm Primary deputy head. "It means that they are more compassionate, more empathetic towards one another.
"One of the things we have noticed the most is that they can recognise when something in the world is unjust or unfair and that they actually have the power to do something about it."