Manchester Arena attack Survivor leads calls for more support for young victims of atrocities

Video report by ITV News' journalist Victoria Grimes.

A survivor of the Manchester Arena terror attack is trying to make a difference to the way victims, especially young people, are helped after surviving such atrocities.

Dr Kath Hill was there on the night of 22 May, 2017 with her son. She set up the Survivors' Choir in the aftermath of the attack to help those affected share their trauma.

Through the members of the choir, Dr Hill realised there was a huge gap in the support available for younger victims.

She is now carrying out research with Lancaster University in a bid to help make a difference to the way young survivors are helped.

Dr Hill said: "For many young people they do want to tell their story because they want to make a difference and that's why we called it [The Quire] Bee The Difference. We want young people to be the difference for the future

"I know what it's like to have to fight for services when your son or daughter has experience something like this.

"I myself had to wait over a year before I was able to see a councillor through my GP. "

Ellie Taylor, who survived the bomb, received help from experts at the Peace Centre in Warrington.

It was set up by the parents of 12-year-old Tim Parry who was killed in The Warrington bombing in 1993, since then they have supported thousands of victims of terror.

Ellie said: "Even now nearly five years on it's all so surreal.

"You don't expect to go through something like that and still have to do that same things that every other fifteen year old does and grow up. It's immensely painful."

Lucy Jarvis was seriously injured in the attack.

"I was more focused on the physical recovery so mental health was pushed back a bit", she explains.

"In the more recent years I've realised that there are things I'm still thinking about and I still needed the help but I had to look and ask for it before I received it."

Yasmin Lee, also a survivor of the arena attack, said: "It's such a niche thing to go through and not having the support in place is really difficult and having to reach out when I was twelve or thirteen. It's difficult because you don't know you're not OK."

Lucy, Yasmin and Ellie are now helping with the research by sharing their own experiences of trying to move on. They all continue to struggle with what happened on the night of the attack.

To find out more about the Bee The Difference project click here.

It will be five years this weekend (22 May, 2022) since the terror attack happened.

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