Walsall for All reached another milestone.
Earlier this month, Walsall for All Board members and friends of the Programme came together to pre-view the 'The Town That We've Build' celebration video gave their wholehearted ‘THANK YOU’ to all involved. Walsall for All work would have not been possible without the support of partner organisations, community groups and residents.
Walsall for All, a partnership programme between Walsall Council, voluntary groups and the public and private sectors, has today 20 June 2022, launched their evaluation report after 3 years of groundbreaking activity.
The report highlights their achievements and recommendations to ensure social cohesion and integration work is recognised on our journey to ‘We are Walsall 2040’. To coincide with the report, Walsall for All’s celebration event ‘The Town That We’ve Built’ is now available to watch online, featuring interviews, case studies and a performance by young people from a local dance group.
Councillor Perry, Deputy Leader and Portfolio Holder for Resilient Communities said:
Walsall for All started with a belief that if you involve diverse people in common causes their perceptions change, they learn from each other and will together become a ‘force of good’. During the pandemic, Walsall for All exceeded all of our expectations, leading the way in providing practical help and human kindness to diverse communities of the town. The programme has never strayed from its original goals of connecting and educating our young people and residents, ensuring they contribute and build a good living environment for each other with human empathy at its heart. This is the key part of Our Walsall Story and I want to see Walsall for All grow and flourish in coming years.
The report covers Walsall for All’s journey since it launched in January 2019 and projects delivered across the four strategic priorities: connecting across communities; young people learning and growing together; working and contributing together and living together.
The projects delivered through Walsall for All have:
Connected voluntary and community sector spaces and ideas for residents to come together to share experiences of ‘belonging to Walsall town’. Notable examples include Community research & dialogue, Pledge, Places of Welcome and innovation projects delivered in the heart of local communities with over 15,000 participants benefiting.
Enabled children and young people to have a voice and a pathway into social action and positive activity, such as ‘Your Voice Now’ and NCS summer programmes.
In partnership with DWP empowered residents ‘furtherest from the job market’ with over 400 participants gaining work experience, apprenticeship or a job at the end of the programme.
Focusing on barriers, over 2000 people benefited from English for Speakers of Other Languages (ESOL) classes setting them to achieve further goals.
Overall, we increased connectedness, social mixing, empathy and understanding of the needs of different communities whether they live in the North, South, West or East of the borough. This has included collaboration with Police on hate crime and better neighbourhood relations for people of Gypsy, Roma and Traveller heritage.
The report also draws upon several recommendations, such as:
Continuing the Walsall for All Pledge as a standard across the sector and encouraging local organisations to promote dialogue and adopt principles of equality, diversity and inclusion.
Engaging with educational settings and youth organisations on social mixing, encouraging respect and raising aspirations, using Walsall for All as an example of good practice.
Securing long-term funding and support for community initiatives such as ESOL classes to ensure delivery continues and remains accessible.
Ensuring resources like the multilingual Welcome Pack and Buddy Scheme are regularly updated and widely used by partner organisations.
Prioritising hate crime to ensure ongoing awareness and better reporting through Safer Walsall Partnership.
A communications and engagement report has also been published, which details residents’ day to day participation in the activities, resulting with over 177,000 engagements on social media alone in addition to other outlets.
The Community, Equality and Cohesion team of Walsall Council have been at the forefront of the delivery of Walsall for All and deserves a special thanks from the Portfolio Holder and our public sector partners.