Why this teen thinks you should never be afraid to be yourself

Inclusion, disability awareness and self-expression were at the heart of a recent event in the capital that brought youth together through music.

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Organised by the British Embassy, students from British School Al Khubairat and Future Rehabilitation Centre joined in song for a unique concert in celebration of Queen Elizabeth II’s birthday.

With a goal of fostering inclusion and celebrating the things that make everyone unique, the children were coached for their performance by 16-year-old Kyle Tomlinson, Special Olympics ambassador and finalist of the 2017 edition of Britain’s Got Talent.

“My job is an honour and a privilege,” Kyle told us. “I feel that just being able to help these children in some way warms my heart. My way of escaping the real world is always through music, and the message I want to put across to them is how they can do that themselves and learn self-expression.”

With expert coaching from Kyle on the art of singing, the youngsters learned a few tips from the teen star ahead of the big performance – but the British singer learned something from them as well.

“When the kids were dancing during my performance, they weren’t scared about what others thought,” he reflected. “I spent my childhood worrying about who I was, about not living up to social standards. These children showed me today that no matter what, be who you are.

“I was bullied all the way through school because I’m a big guy and I like music, because I was different,” Kyle added. “But when I see these children, I want to get the message across that it’s okay to be different, and it’s okay to be you.”

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