Let’s talk about race: starting conversations
We’re working on a new project with our partners Nova New Opportunities to find out how racism affects local people, and our charity’s role in creating a more equal society.
By Victoria Hill – CEO, Hammersmith United Charities
I was surprised by the recent report from the Commission on Race and Ethnic Disparities which concluded that whilst impediments and disparities are experienced by people from ethnic minorities very few of them are directly to do with racism. Some of the findings were at odds from the evidence of our work and it was disappointing to see how such an important report appeared to downplay the experiences of many of the people who live in our community.
So what role should Hammersmith United Charities take to tackle racism?
We don’t know yet, but we are working with our new partners, Nova New Opportunities, to find out.
Over the next few months, with Nova’s support, we’ll be spending time talking openly about racism and racial inequality with a wide range of local people, the organisations we support, their beneficiaries and other local strategic stakeholders.
We want to find out how racism truly affects people who live in our area of benefit in their everyday lives. We want to understand what work is being done by other local institutions to address racial inequality in the area. And we want to know what meaningful role our charity should play.
Some members of our community feel – and often are – unheard. We hope that the Let’s Talk About Race project will help bring their views and experience to a wider audience. Our discoveries will shape everything we do in the future, like our approach to grant-making, and how we work with local partners to create a more equal society.
At a board level the project will be sponsored by Adam Matan OBE, one of our Trustees and local resident. Adam came to the UK from Somalia as a teenager and until recently led the local charity Anti-Tribalism Movement which promotes fairer and more equitable societies.
We don’t have all the answers yet, but we have plenty of questions – and we’re ready to start asking them. We’ll be sharing our findings over the coming months.
In the meantime, if you would like to find out more about the project or share your views we’d love to hear from you – contact firstname.lastname@example.org