Award-winning boy hosting anti-bullying art gallery
PUBLISHED: 16:00 16 November 2017
A North Somerset boy who won a prestigious award from the Royal Family hopes to 'unite Clevedon' at an anti-bullying event this week.
Diana Legacy Award-winning 11-year-old Nicholas Nikiforou, of Weston, is hosting an art exhibition at Clevedon Pier from now until Sunday to promote Anti-Bullying Week.
Nicholas suffered years of bullying after he was left with facial scars when a collection of moles he was born with, called congenital melanocystic nevus, was removed at a young age at Great Ormond Street Hospital in London.
But Nicholas transformed the negative energy he was subjected to into a positive outcome, campaigning against bullying and raising money for Great Ormond Street – which earned him some royal admirers.
Nicholas was one of just 20 children to receive the coveted award in June, giving him the once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to collect his prize from Prince William and Prince Harry – who created the awards in memory of their mother.
And after receiving the accolade, Nicholas has taken his efforts to help others who suffer from bullying to a new level, and wants ‘everyone to have their own voice’.
The burgeoning artist will showcase a range of his work in an exhibition called A Big Breath Of Fresh Air, and the youngster hopes people can ‘celebrate their differences’.
He said: “I am really proud because all I want is for everyone to have their own voice and to be happy. I can’t wait to see all the people.”
The pier, in The Beach, is hosting the pop-up gallery in its Porthole Room.
Nicholas’ mum, Melanie Andrews, told the Mercury she was ‘very proud of her son’.
She said: “But it’s not just about him – it’s about all the children who are being bullied out there.
“If they are being bullied there is help, like the Diana Award. This is a celebration for everyone.
“It’s very heart-warming because. We want to thank everyone who supported Nick through his journey. We want to bring Clevedon together and unite everyone.”
His sister, Christina Nikiforou, added: “We want to give people their voice, like Nick lost his through bullying. So people like Jill Dando and Jo Cox, we’re giving them their voice back.”