Ellen Jones is an activist, writer & YouTuber. In 2017 she was named Stonewall’s Young Campaigner of The Year after running successful campaigns tackling LGBTQ+ inequality in schools and online. Ellen makes content about LGBTQ+ issues, mental health, activism, books and internet culture. Subsequently, Ellen has been invited to deliver talks in schools, discuss issues on national television and sit on panels across the UK. Currently Ellen is attending university in London and is attempting to navigate this whole adulthood thing.
- URL/IRL Panel for Tate Late at the V&A MusuemWas a privilege to host the hashtag#FridayLates V&A panel exploring the URL/IRL divide. Exploring how we can use the internet to affect positive social change is one of my true passions and it was fantastic to see how young people are actively engaging with the online to create the changes they want to see in the real world. © Karolina Wielocha / @karolina.wielocha
- MTV EMA Generation ChangeI won the inaugural MTV EMA Generation Change Award. The award spotlights five young people from across the globe changing the world. I was awarded the award for my work campaigning for LGBTQ+ equality, mental health awareness and disability rights and in particular was recognised for my use of social media in effecting change.
- ‘Young people are angry’: the teenage activists shaping our future (The Guardian)I came out at 14. When you’re a young LGBTQ+ person and you come out, you’re put in this position where you are suddenly expected to educate your peers. I’d be in a lesson and someone would ask me an incredibly inappropriate question. People feel like they have permission to access all of you when you’re still figuring things out for yourself. At the same time, someone in my class was sending me online anonymous, violent messages, telling me to kill myself. My school didn’t know what to do with it. At one point, they had contacted my parents, pushing me to come out to them, too, and it all became detrimental to my mental health. I don’t come from a political family, but I’ve always had a strong sense of fairness. After coming out, I started making educational YouTube videos on LGBTQ+ issues and people watched them. I also worked with my school to establish support systems and visibility for LGBTQ+ pupils. I got together with teachers to set up a group. We held events and assemblies, and suddenly others wanted to join. I worked with the school to run surveys of the staff and students, so we knew the issues that needed addressing. Advertisement As part of a Stonewall youth programme, I started a YouTube series called Queeries. I invite anyone to submit questions, however inappropriate or silly, and I sit down with another LGBTQ+ person and we answer them. Part of that is creating space for difficult questions, but also to give others a platform. I am very aware of the fact that I am white, middle-class and able-bodied, and there are a lot of things I feel I can’t speak to. I have been diagnosed with bipolar disorder and autism, but campaigning is always something I’ve felt able to do. I was happy to do the work with my school, and I know that education resources are stretched, but schools shouldn’t rely on pupils to affect change. That puts pressure on young people to challenge things adults should be addressing. Many young people think they aren’t going to amount to anything because of all the headlines we read. But that’s designed to discredit our concerns about how the world’s being run. A lot of people in control are invested in the world as it currently stands; to suggest that things aren’t great the way they are scares them. Read the whole article: https://www.theguardian.com/society/2018/may/13/young-people-are-angry-meet-the-teenage-activists-shaping-our-future
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Projects credited in
- Top 50 Influential Neurodivergent Women 2019Women Beyond The Box is proud to launch the UK’s first list showcasing 50 Influential Neurodivergent Women. It is estimated that at least 10% of the UK population is Neurodivergent, that is Dyslexia, Dyspraxia, Dyscalculia, Autism, ADHD and Tourette’s. The list was born from a desire to amplify the voices of women who are creating ripples of change within their industries by challenging the narrative around Neurodiversity. We are Female Founders, Scientists, Designers, Creatives, Artists, Actre41
- Meet 100 LGBT+ Trailblazers Redefining the Creative IndustryWe asked influential LGBT+ icons to nominate trailblazers who they believe are redefining the creator landscape. The result? A unique and incredible list of 100 trailblazing LGBT+ folk breaking barriers and inspiring change! We’re on a mission to explore and tackle inequalities in the creative industry - this is why we run diversity initiatives, dedicating our curated projects and people sections on The Dots to undersung groups. This brings together an abundance of dazzling work from diverse cr98