Project - Young Aawaz

Young Aawaz

May 21st, 2014 | Aawaz Admin

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The Young AAWAZ project is funded through the Young People Fund, it is a five year project, currently in its fourth year.

The project commenced in November 2009 for young Asian women age 14 years to 22 years of age.

The project is designed for the young women to help in their personal development, encouraging them and equipping them with new knowledge and skills. Our young women need to learn and be confident enough to represent their own needs, and to assist their peers.

During the four years we have worked hard to put down a good foundation and establish the concept of the work with young asian women, we are engaging with many young women and girls and their parents and we are receiving excellent feedback.

Young AAWAZ offers a varied range of activities , we have through these diverse activities reached and informed a much larger group of young people. We have raised awareness about the project and its general benefits within the wider communities.

We engage with young people through a range of methods. We publicise the project through word of mouth, leaflets, posters, banners, and promotion items such as Tee-shirt, jackets, caps, mugs, mousemats, pens etc. We publicise the project through a range of community and school events, where our staff and volunteers attend and deliver sessions and workshops.

Young AAWAZ members are involved in a number of community festivals, delivering presentations at community events and consultation exercises jointly with our partner agencies.

We are working with a number of schools, a college, an academy and two of the universities. We continue to make links and develop partnership working with more agencies and groups.

We believe that the Young AAWAZ Project has started to unlock the potential in the girls and young women of Asian heritage in particular within the Muslim communities, as the culture here is one of traditional reserve .We encourage and support the girls and young women to take part in personal development.

“Young AAWAZ Project has made good progress, and continues to go from strength to strength” – Headteacher at local school.

However there are many challenges in what we do. We are determined to successfully deliver this ambitious piece of work which is deep-rooted and encouraging people to do things in a different way and that means that we are looking to change the culture, attitudes and views, all this takes time but we are definitely making an impact.

“We are so pleased to see the willingness amongst the young people to take part in the project” – Local County Councillor

It is so encouraging to see that the young women are willing to change and improve their perceptions and feel valued in helping others if approached in the right way.

Our project also discovered how easy it is to get young people involved if they are consulted and their views respected in developing activities . We believe that we have proved that we can stimulate change in young women who take part in our project, that a little nudge can make a big difference.

We are pleased and proud with our work and the progress it is making within Muslim Asian community, as explained earlier it is traditionally hard to engage with the girls and young women in this community.

Young Aawaz supporting young Carers

Young Aawaz acknowledges the important role that young carers play in assisting their families. A number of young Aawaz members are carers , and this important aspect of their life has been recognised through working closely with schools and offering support, encouragement and inviting the young people to participate in activities that are designed to help them.

Naima a young carer explained “I did not see myself as doing anything different I just help look after my mum, but I get behind with things at school and some weeks when my mum is not well I am late for school and it gets me down”. Naima went on to explain that through the Young Aawaz Project she has been able to share things, “just by talking about things and getting involved in the activities. I have really enjoyed the baking sessions and the outdoor walks”.

Another young Carer said “I have just been able to chill and spend time with my mates” I had forgotten how I missed that bit.

Carmel the project Worker explained that “Young Aawaz work with the young person and their family so in many cases we have been able to discuss and negotiate time off for the young person”.

For more information about Young AAWAZ please contact Carmell, Nasira or Dawn on 01254 398176.