BME Empowerment Programme: Access To Services
Access to services is a basic but important consideration that affects people’s choices and can have a serious impact in maintaining community cohesion, particularly if the service is not responsive or sensitive to the needs of the people that needed it the most. It’s more than just providing the services but the question of whether these services are used by certain community group should not be underestimated and the effect can be far reaching. Last year October 2011 BME Empowerment event was an eye opener for most of us when we had the opportunity to bring the community together with a common purpose of reaching out to hard-to-reach community.
BME Empowerment is a new project initiative that was conceptualised following series of meetings and consultation held with stakeholders, both organisations and service users. It was an initiative that looked at the overall enterprise approach to really tackle some of the problems certain disadvantaged people face in the community. As an organisation working with BME community, we keep track of records of some of the underlying problems people face to properly integrate with the immediate or host community.
To celebrate Black History Month last year, we raised public awareness of what organizations in Hull, both new and existing businesses, do for the benefit of the local people with mixture of art and performance. Follow the link below for additional information on Best Hope activities.
We are employing a creative way of bringing people together to be empowered and with the opportunity to network with each other and with the local community. We are working and planning strategic meetings with different organizational groups to include Community Health Care Partnership, Hull City Council, Humberside Police, NHS Hull – Mental Health and Smoking Cessation unit, ICAS, NHS – ABL Health, Black History Partnership, who are members of the project steering group and willing to use this platform to reach out to hard to reach communities.
We hope to identify and work with more organizations. To encourage organizations to take ownership of this project, we recently met on the 16th March to provide feedback to people to encourage involvement of partners. After so much deliberation, we came up with suggested topics and agreed to strategically focus on some of the topics and to organize event/workshop/activities throughout the year. It’s however important for us to focus on the specific needs of people and to maintain our trust and relationship with the people we serve. The amount of work we can do to actualise the following define aims and objectives depend totally on the level of commitment and financial support from the local authority and key stakeholders involved.
Aim and Objectives:
On the overall, our programme identifies with the local priorities and support positive changes in people’s lives and in their community.
- Promoting high levels of user involvement, building people’s confidence, promote equal access to services, particularly where there are low or no participation.
- To encourage collaborative working that support local organizations to achieve lasting positive social change by making services to be responsive to the needs of specific disadvantaged people.
- Encouraging social inclusion, connection and integration by working with wider range of people and organisation to build stronger community.
- Promote, raise awareness and make know of what organisation do for the benefit of the general public.
- To support the delivery of the City of Hull ambitions of making the local community a peaceful, proud place to live, work and invest.