STUDENTS scooped a human rights prize as part of a university’s project to raise awareness.

The University of Essex’s annual Human Rights Prize is open to secondary schools and sixth form colleges and aims to highlight human rights issues and empower young people to stand up for others.

Manningtree High School students spent a day on campus in December as part of the project.

They heard bite-size lectures from human rights experts, visited a marketplace in the Hex - staffed by representatives from Amnesty International, Hope Not Hate and Refugee Action Colchester - and brainstormed ideas with visual artist Jane Frederick and poet Luke Wright.

They then split into smaller groups to develop their creative projects over the next ten weeks.

The students’ final presentations, delivered to an audience at Essex Business School, showcased the campaigns staged in their own schools, which featured videos, photography, dance and poetry.

A spokesman for Manningtree High School said: “As part of their work, the group planned in detail and decided to visit Highfields Primary to work with Year 5’s on human rights.

“On our return to the university, loaded with props and a well-rehearsed presentation, our students excelled.

“Very tough competition on the day, but our group won through with their polished speeches, video about human rights, posters, their equality sculpture and detailed lesson plans for Year 5’s.”