Transgender rapper and inspirational role model honoured at National Diversity Awards

Nate Ethan Watson (left) and Sebbie Hall

Two inspirational people in the West Midlands have been honoured at the National Diversity Awards.

Transgender rapper Nate Ethan Watson from Wolverhampton won the positive role model award for LGBT for his work in bringing transgender issues to the forefront of society.

Sebbie Hall from Lichfield scooped the positive role model award for disability for raising thousands of pounds by carrying out simple acts of kindness.

Both were honoured at a glitzy ceremony at Liverpool's Anglican Cathedral on Friday, September 16.

The awards celebrate excellent achievements of grass-root communities that tackle the issues in today’s society and gives them recognition for their dedication and hard work.

Nate's story

Nate, 35, says that he knew "he was meant to be a boy" from the age of five when he told his primary school friends in the playground about the way he felt.

This news was not received well and Nate felt as though he would be trapped in a body that he did not identify with for the rest of his life.

Eventually he built up the courage to begin his transition process from female to male on 25 July 2018 whilst studying Public Health at the University of Wolverhampton.

He describes this moment as one of the highest points in his journey.

Nate before (left) and during (right) his transition process. Credit: Nate Ethan Watson

He said: "I was so excited. I'd spent so many years just suppressing, and feeling that I had to be a certain way and kind of hiding all my truths to be accepted by everybody else."

During the transition process Nate has been taking male hormones (testosterone) where he has seen significant changes such as the appearance of facial hair, more of a masculine facial structure, and a deeper voice.

Since then, he's been using his platform as a musician and health care worker to inspire others and assist in bringing transgender issues to the forefront of society.

Sebbie's story

The 18-year-old from Lichfield raised thousands of pounds by carrying out random acts of kindness.  

During lockdown, Sebbie wanted to raise a thousand pounds with a hundred acts of kindness, - but it's carried on for over a year, and has raised nearly £40,000.

He has a rare chromosome anomaly which means he has learning and physical difficulties. He struggles with normal daily life skills, but his superpower is kindness.

The money raised by Sebbie's acts of kindness has had a huge impact on his local community. 

He's bought adapted laptops to help children with special needs communicate and funded an arts hub, where young people who cant communicate naturally, can engage with music and theatre and overcome that barrier. 

Sebbie also funded a mixed ability rugby group that's supported by coaches at Lichfield Rugby Club, with support from the former England and Leicester Tigers player Will Greenwood.

Sebbie's philosophy is simple - 'stay safe, be kind and leave no one behind'.