On the 25th February 2016, Forward Thinking facilitated an intensive one day workshop with young leaders, with constituency, aged 18-30, from Nottingham’s Muslim and Afro-Caribbean communities. Participants, whom represented 3 local community organisations, are tackling a range of intersecting issues within socio-economically deprived areas of Nottingham, including youth unemployment, poverty alleviation, the marginalisation of women, gang crime, mental health, refugee resettlement, drug abuse and prisoner rehabilitation.
Grant Fisher, Director of Model Westminster, and Emily Buchanan, former BBC journalist, taught the rudiments of engagement with the media, the British political system and policy making. Participants practised filming impactful footage, honing their message, interview techniques and mechanisms to influence national political and media discourse in order to provide a greater platform for vital community work. Much of this work takes place apace, yet lacks national political recognition and financial support. The workshop was part of an ongoing Forward Thinking initiative which will see training offered to community organisations from 10 cities within London, the Midlands, West Yorkshire and Greater Manchester.
The workshop allowed the group to coalesce around an initial agenda for forthcoming regional and national roundtables which will create a space for holistic discussion on cross community concerns, catalysing meaningful engagement first with regional, and then national, decision makers and influencers.