Opportunities for Black and Ethnic Minority Communities

Great Communities is a team at Great Places that carries out research and sets up new initiatives to meet the needs of Black and Ethnic Minority (BME) and new migrant communities. It supports the work of our Great Opportunities team by making sure that relevant training is offered to residents to make them ready for work or to have the confidence to take up opportunities.

‘Let’s Live Together’ tool kit
This helps families move into non-traditional, predominantly white areas. It's already been successful in Salford and has helped families gain a better standard of living. We give families a chance to see the community at first-hand and the local services (GP, schools, places of prayer, youth clubs etc).

Citizenship programme with primary schools in Oldham
A new citizenship programme will be developed with primary schools in the Oldham PFI neighbourhoods which will help children get involved with the community, teach them ways to save the environment and help them understand their rights and responsibilities.

Employment and skills training for women in Oldham
In partnership with the Pakistani Community Centre and local employer (Azura Soft Furnishings), we are providing personal development, IT skills and basic English skills for 30 women at the centre. They also get 20 hours of sewing skills training at Azura’s factory.

Community interpreter training 
Over the last two years we've helped 75 people qualify with an interpreting qualification. The interpreters have helped Great Places by offering their skills to help us communicate better with our residents.

HACT and Great Places volunteering programme
Great Communities will employ two volunteers through housing association charity HACT and our own internal volunteering programme.The HACT volunteer will be placed with two community groups to carry out research on the needs of new emerging communities in Oldham and Manchester. The second volunteer will help out with the BME property type research project over a three-month period on a part time basis.

PETAL training
An adult tutoring course will be developed to train residents who have been on the community interpreters course, and other new residents. As we will be providing free training, participants will be asked to provide English for Speakers of other Languages (ESOL) training to our residents initially on a voluntary basis.

DIY course

We hold DIY courses aimed at local residents with very basic knowledge of home DIY. Simple things like wiring a plug, painting walls and tiling are all covered in the sessions. We also organise female-only sessions so that women from the BME community can feel comfortable.

For more information on the above, please email our Customer Service Team at cat@greatplaces.org.uk​