Dec Stone is a current student on the Bristol City Community Trust’s Sports Media course and is a member of the Community Trust’s Youth Council.
Dec, who is also autistic, was selected to be part of the Trust’s Youth Council – a body of eight young people who help to decide and shape the work that is conducted at the Community Trust – in the role of Media Manager as a result of his excellent social media skills.
Dec has now been a member of the council for nearly three years. Over this period of time, the council have helped the Trust to launch initiatives such as the Women’s and Girls football and fitness hub, and a Friday night social inclusion football session – which delivers football to 80 young people per session and has drastically reduced criminal activity in the area that it operates.
The work of Dec and the rest of the Youth Council has been recognized on a national level and has won both EFL and FA awards. In addition to this, the work of the Youth Council played an integral part in the Trust winning the award of Community Club of the Year in 2018 and retaining it in 2019.
When Dec first joined the Youth Council, he was quite an introverted individual who lacked self-confidence, however since then, he has grown into a confident individual and is a prominent member of the council.
Dec’s confidence has grown to such an extent that he now works on multiple Trust projects as well as holiday camps where he works as Lead Coach for several of the sessions.
Dec told Bristol City Community Tust that: “When I first started at the Youth Council, I was way out of my comfort zone. However, I did not let this dissuade me from perusing my goals, and I am so proud of all that we have achieved.
He went on to add that, “People shouldn’t really see autism as a disability or think that just because someone is autistic it means that they cannot do things. If you really want something and work hard, then you can do anything.”