Brother of murdered ISIS victim David Haines visits Brent schools
PUBLISHED: 07:57 23 March 2018 | UPDATED: 10:39 23 March 2018
A man whose brother was murdered by Isis terrorists wishes to return to Brent after the reception he received at schools he visited.
Mike Haines put his grief aside to speak to students while on his nationwide Global Acts of Unity Tour.
Staff at the Convent of Jesus and Mary Language College in Crownhill Road, Willesden, invited him back after his first visit to sixth formers to speak to Year 10 girls.
And pupils at Kingburys High School, in Princes Avenue, also asked probing questions about his brother.
Mike’s younger brother David was a humanitarian aid worker who was kidnapped and murdered by the so-called Islamic State, also called Daesh, in Syria in 2014.
He said: “I have been to Brent a number of times over the years, and it never ceases to amaze me how receptive young people are. Both schools I visited were brilliant, with really good questions.
“When my brother was murdered, I felt anger, in my head I wanted to kill –not people, not religions, just those responsible.
“All these acts of terrorism, it doesn’t matter where it comes from, it’s all about trying to get people to react with hatred.
“I feel it every day, I have a battle with hate, it’s a choice that I face.
“We have to fight with humanity, fight with heart, go up to someone you don’t know and just smile at them.
“Only through coming together in this way can we defeat extremism and hatred. I hope that the Global Acts of Unity Schools Tour, can help achieve that goal”.
Luisa Bonelli. deputy Headteacher at the Convent of Jesus and Mary said: “The girls were incredibly happy to have been given this amazing opportunity and staff also offered some very positive feedback.
“The message Mike gave was such a positive one, encouraging people to go beyond hatred and not base responses to such brutal attacks on retaliation but offer forgiveness, which is one of our key values.
“As a catholic school it’s not about hating, stereotyping, and pointing the finger, it’s about understanding.”