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#iwill ambassador Scottish Gypsy Traveller Assembly

1337. Charlotte Donaldson

Charlotte Donaldson, aged 18, from Aberdeenshire, is an #iwill ambassador who was a founding member of the Scottish Gypsy Traveller Assembly in 2018 to lead efforts to further recognise the rights and cultural heritage of the approximately 4,000 strong Gypsy/Traveller community in the country.

Charlotte Donaldson

Charlotte has been active in speaking for the Gypsy/Traveller community from a small age and advocating for greater equality and representation of the community, particularly among young people, and is working to expand the Gypsy Traveller Youth Forum for Scotland to ensure the voices of young Gypsy Travellers from each of the 32 districts in Scotland can be fully heard.

In a personal letter to Charlotte, Prime Minister Boris Johnson said:

“I know you do this with no thought of praise or reward, but allow me to offer my own recognition of your brilliant and passionate work promoting the voices of young people in the Scottish Gypsy Traveller community, fighting for equality and celebrating your rich cultural heritage.”

Dr Rania Marandos, CEO of ‘Step Up To Serve’, which coordinates the #iwill campaign, said:

“At the #iwill campaign we know that young people have the energy, ideas and drive to create positive change in their communities and to tackle many of society’s tougher challenges. We are so pleased to see the Prime Minister recognising the courageous and powerful work that Charlotte has undertaken in advocating for the rights of Gypsies/Travellers. We hope that this inspires organisations across sectors to understand the value of working in partnership with young people of all backgrounds, and to empower more young people to tackle intolerance and inequality in our society.”

Charlotte said:

“I’m delighted to be receiving this award from the Prime Minister for my work in defending the rights of Gypsies/Travellers. There is still a long way to go before Gypsies/Travellers have equal rights in this country and I am determined to play a role in tackling stigma and getting more support and protections for my community. I hope that my story will inspire politicians to reflect on the challenges we still face as a community and have a positive dialogue with us.”

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