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Citizen 2020

Who

Double Helix Resources

Why

Funded through the national ‘Near Neighbours’ programme (twice) and subsequently John Lyons Charity  and Acton Gardens Community Chest, this project is developing on South Acton estate and Ealing, an area of deprivation and which historically has seen infusions of immigration. Responses based on tolerance have created an environment where communities co-exist with little understanding of their respective histories, impact on their current lives and few opportunities to re-imagine their futures.

Below we outline a highly innovative local response to the global issue of refugees and mass migration, but also to needs of the host communities that they will attempt to integrate with.  
There is a need for more proactive, creative and effective initiatives in supporting understanding, integration and participation of diverse communities.

We have:

- Developed social interaction between residents by mapping, understanding and sharing their historical experience and its’ impact on them.
- Enhanced intercultural and inter-religious dialogue through exploring the concept of ‘identity’.
- Developed social action through creative, sustainable practices and structures for communities to democratically co-create their futures.

What

We trained 100 Volunteers as a Training Group who were then tasked with engaging with 5 other residents each, increasing the reach of the project to potential volunteers. We have also trained 75 young persons in the project.

Adult participants were aged between 18 and 75 years. Young persons are aged between 4 years and 25 years.

The group consisted of an even mixture of genders cultures and backgrounds.
Due to the relationship network of the C2020 Partnership Group, it has been straightforward to implement by professionals.

How

Selection: Residents were invited by members of C2020 Partnership Group to volunteer for engaging with project activities.
 
Preparation: Potential volunteers were engaged with by members of C2020 Partnership group and project expectations outlined in a series of 1:1 meetings.

Training: Devised and delivered by DHR over a period of 12 weeks, the course included the following elements:

1.    Development and provision of a 12 hour training course on ‘Inclusive Identity & Community Development’
2.    Delivery of expressive arts training to the group  (by ‘Ark Artists’ & ‘Yonescat’) to enable participants to express their experiences non-verbally and encourage their communities to do the same
3.    Organisation of discussion groups to further participant interaction opportunities and explore the application of shared concepts
4.    Creation of a set of shared aspirations with the ‘community group’ to galvanise civil engagement, re-enforced by acquiring further skills to support the dissemination process
5.    Exhibiting the work and narratives produced in Acton and Ealing
6.    An impact evaluation by the University of York that involved participants and focused on the growth of social interaction, inter-religious dialogue and social action

 

While tested together for the first time through this project, these tools have been developed through 40 years of experience, working with young persons and families in deprived neighbourhoods and diverse communities.

Management: The Project was managed by the Project Manager, from ‘Artification’, a member of the C2020 Partnership group.

When

This project can be delivered in 12 weeks and can be run at any time of the year.

Effect

This is an effective project based on the results of an independent evaluation carried out during the project by the University of Leicester.

The evaluation was based on a Theory of Change (ToC) model, building on a model applied through the national ‘Near Neighbours’ programme evaluation and mapping the changes that occurred through the project, reflecting the project’s aims to:
• Develop social interaction between residents by mapping, understanding and sharing their historical experience and its impact on them
• Enhance intercultural and inter-religious dialogue through exploring the concept of ‘identity’
• Develop social action through creative, sustainable practices and structures for communities to co-create their future


The evaluation found that what appears to distinguish the Citizen 20:20 Theory of Change model is its starting point: the focus on exploring individual identity, which then enables the opportunity for dialogue – for social interaction – through exploring this concept, and the related tools. While the social interaction continues through the process it also enables the opportunities for creative thinking and social action (through collaborative creative projects and other potential social activities), also resulting in potential culture change within (and beyond) the group); as shown in the ToC model observed for this project.

Assessment

Effectiveness:

High degree / regularly

Gender sensitivity:

High degree / regularly

Culture sensitivity:

High degree / regularly

Doable (practical):

High degree / regularly

Participatory:

High degree / regularly

Replicable and adaptable:

High degree / regularly

Assessment/evaluated:

High degree / regularly

Type of good practice

Methods, Practical tool, Training tool (Train the trainer of online trains course), Organisational structure or tool

Themes

Democratic dialogue, Promoting democratic values, Social inclusion, Youth civic participation

Duration

Continuously

Type of activity

Mixed (individual and/or group sessions)

Resourses

C2020 course on ‘Inclusive Identity & Community Development’, Art materials, Photography & Film making equipment, Exhibition space.

Contact

Brian De Lord

United Kingdom