On Saturday 13th June 2020, Jamaine Facey, Lee Russell, Chris Otokito and Patrick Hutchinson's lives turned upside down.
Peaceful protesters all over the world had taken to the streets to call for justice of the horrific deaths of George Floyd and Breonna Taylor at the hands of police as well as numerous ignored black trans fatalities including Riah Milton.
But this day felt different. Following a terrorist threat from the former leader of the EDL Tommy Robinson, a sea of far-right hooligans hurling hateful comments and aggression had flooded into London.
As father figures, Jamaine, Lee, Chris and Patrick felt adamant that they needed to protect anyone vulnerable who was not met with peace. "We attended the demonstration in unity, with a clear purpose to be role models, and to use our past life experience and wisdom to prevent the young people in attendance from making foolish choices which could so rapidly change their lives," says Lee Russell.
However, when they arrived at Waterloo station, violence among the counter-protestors had already reached a boiling point. Not only had the racist mob turned on each other, but innocent members of the public as well.
One far-right protester slumped over on the ground was deteriorating very quickly. Patrick picked him up while the others shielded him, carried him to nearby police and as a collective, they saved his life. Humbly retracing their steps, Patrick comments "As I was carrying him, he was still receiving blows. It didn't cross my mind that he might hold prejudices, we just wanted to get him out of there."
The unforgettable image of Patrick was captured on camera and in a matter of hours, was circulated globally. By morning the likes of CNN, The New York Times, The Guardian, and The BBC started calling for interviews. But actions speak louder than words, and the most striking element of Patrick, Jamaine, Lee and Chris's photo from that day didn't require any subtext: it was that of a black man taking a white man out of danger.
Speaking on the moment as Patrick Hutchinson stated, "It's not black vs white, it everyone vs racism." Jamaine Facey backed that up by clarifying "We saved him to protect our children's future. Otherwise, the narrative from the media on that day would have been completely different."
Off the back of the hype of The Waterloo incident, 'The Fathers' have been in constant demand. Among many things, they've landed multi-page features in Men's Health, exchanged words with influential black leaders such as American Civil Rights Activist Al Sharpton and were invited by Lord Dr Michael Hastings to the Houses of Parliament.
This action was seen globally as a moment to remember. Immortalised in time by a single image and discussed in many communities as an amazing act of kindness. One person who saw this and was touched by Patrick’s actions was Troy Davis, owner of the Brand Design Agency Interscope Productions Ltd, who knew Patrick & Jamaine. Troy wanted to make sure the world would never forget this moment. Troy reached out to his business partner, Entertainment Mogul, Richard Pascoe, who also knew Patrick. They discussed the image, the events that had transpired and how they could work together to make that moment into a movement.
After strategising together Troy & Richard held a meeting to discuss their ideas with the guys. Bonded by a common thread they went on to form ‘UTCAI‘ (United To Change And Inspire), based on the actions that happened on that day. Jamaine, Patrick, Chris & Lee UNITED on the day. Patrick CHANGED the narrative that would have gone out to the media the next day by saving the counter protester. Based on these actions, the team aim to INSPIRE others to do the same.
UTCAI will continue to assess the needs and gaps of the community through mentoring, education and skill enhancement opportunities. They are helping to build leaders, and create positive and powerful programmes and opportunities for people of all ages. UTCAI have developed a programme about courage and will continue to enhance society with their “anti-bystander” training. UTCAI is committed to bringing people together positively for the betterment of communities and society in general. Youth development strongly underpins their actions.
Starting from the top where real change must happen to influence society UTCAI regularly deliver workshops, panel discussions, Q&A’s and keynote speeches for many of the world’s major corporate companies, public sector and government organisations. Their aim is to bring about a fairer and more just system for people of all races with each of the team having various areas of work that reflect the values and ethics of UTCAI including diversity equity & inclusion, education, mental health & wellbeing, criminal justice reform and youth development.