Community Cohesion
Black Country

TCT celebrates Interfaith Week!

As part of our celebrations for Interfaith Week, TCT and Black Country Near Neighbours asked people to share some of their experiences of taking part in projects and to share their ideas of what they have been doing to bring people together.

Interfaith Week

Laura Nott - Regional Support Hub Co-ordinator, West Midlands - Ovacome

"The lovely friendships created through Black Country Near Neighbours (and the amazing work of Shaz) have been invaluable in the success of our project. We wanted to raise awareness of the symptoms of ovarian cancer by reaching people who don’t have English as their first language. They shouldn’t be left out & left to suffer worse health. Shaz connected us to some wonderful women who kindly volunteered their time to record short films to explain the main symptoms & where people can get help.Meeting women from different communities (who speak Punjabi, Urdu, Gujarati & Bengali) has been a privilege & a pleasure. Can’t wait to get everyone together (when it is safe to do so) to celebrate with a film screening party.

Thank you Shaz & BCNN"

Shaz and colleagues filming the new Ovacome video to raise awareness of of the symptoms of ovarian cancer by reaching people who don’t have English as their first language.

Ursula Walker

"Walsall Women Together provided a great safe space for Walsall women from all backgrounds to meet and share their experiences."

Martin Lynch

"Black Country Near Neighbours have always played an active role in bringing people together from all faiths, diversities and none faith. The Real People Honest Talk event I attended was inspiring, bringing together as it did people from a wide variety of faith's and none."

Shokt Fazal

"In Walsall we have been actively engaging community’s to build new friendships and learn a new skill - bike riding. It’s been good to see in last weeks since the project has been running the diverse people that have been joining in. Unfortunately due to lockdown we have given this a pause but hope to start soon. Thanks to Shaz NearNeighbours for supporting this project by mobilising for us."

Gurbax Kaur - Positive Participation Mental Health Services

"I have participated in some events and found they were really well organised, informative and thought provoking whilst providing comfort and compassion during these difficult and dark times..."

Councillor Obaida Ahmed - St Peter's Ward - City of Wolverhampton Council

"One of the highlights of becoming a Councillor was being able to work with near neighbours to start Women Together group in Wolverhampton. We have made great friendships for life with sisters from all faiths and none. A personal highlight for me was being able to share my Hajj experience with our group. I am truly grateful to have all these wonderful people in my life and would encourage everyone to get involved in your local near neighbours groups!"

Rev Helen Baiby - St Chad and St Mark's Church, Wolverhampton

"Where do I start! So many amazing projects have happened! From Upcycling Sewing, Chadmark Ladies Group, Litter picking and Hanging Basket making...Without the help of Near Neighbours we wouldn't have the bonds and memories."

Maimoona Ramzan - Turning Points

"In Lye/Dudley we have been actively engaging diverse women to build new friendships and provide safe spaces to make women feel better and share experiences. We have held Dudley Women Together events, Real People Honest Talk sessions, International Womens Day Event as well as regular themed initiatives which gave women from all backgrounds an opportunity to meet more regularly and see how they can help in making their communities better. Thanks to Shaz for supporting our group in so many ways and I would encourage people to get engaged with their local Near Neighbours projects in order to bring communities together, Maz."

Anna Webster Rogozinska - Caldmore Community Garden

"Thanks to Near Neighbours we have been able to actively work in Caldmore / Palfrey area of Walsall to bring diverse communities together and celebrate their cultures. At Caldmore Community Garden we have organised community festivals, creative workshops, women's cooking projects, Men's Shed project, Real People Honest Talk sessions, activities for kids and meetings with places of worship and community projects across the Borough."

Caldmore Gardens

Councillor Rupinderjit Kaur - Spring Vale Ward - City of Wolverhampton Council

"Where do I start.. I have been part of the network since march or April but it seems like Near Neighbour and Shaz Near Neighbours are part of our family now. We worked on different projects and I have to say that Near neighbour team is just absolutely amazing especially our wonderful Shaz Akhtar. Thank you so much for working extremely hard and making a difference in so many lives."

Jaikara CIC

"Its always been a please working with Shaz. We have started our journey with Near Neighbours in March with online chanting prayers and poems for COVID-19 Heroes. We worked together on different awareness campaigns such as Honour based violence, forced marriage and Domestic Violence. Once again We are back with our new project REVIVE-Women's wellbeing, funded by Near Neighbour. More details will be out soon."


You may also enjoy these videos showing some of our work and impact: