Current and Future Plans

Current Activities

South West Dorset Multicultural Network currently undertakes the following:
Hold 3 key events per year open to all and celebrating:

1. Holocaust Memorial Day - January
2. Gypsy, Roma, Traveller History Month - May/June
3. Black History Month - October

These events are held with the involvement of a range of partners including Dorset Race Equality Council (DREC), the Police and Crime Commissioner, Bournemouth University, as well as local schools, other statutory bodies and local community organisations.

The production of a newsletter 3 times per year. This is circulated to over 500 individuals and groups as a paper copy – delivered to South West Dorset Multicultural Network members, GP surgeries, libraries, schools, nurseries and statutory bodies in South West Dorset and beyond. The newsletter is posted on the staff Intranet of Dorset Healthcare University NHS Foundation Trust and articles of interest are regularly reproduced in the weekly staff bulletin.

South West Dorset Multicultural Network supports the growth of, and networking with, Black and ethnic minority groups and initiatives in the area, such as:

- Dorset Race Equality Council (DREC) – regular liaison regarding racist incidents; joint work on events such as the Gypsy, Roma, Traveller History Month

- Dorchester Islamic Centre – Mosque, Cultural and Educational Centre – support for mutual projects, advice and information sharing

- Kushti Bok (new and other Travellers) – support for mutual projects, advice and information sharing

- The Verne Immigration Removal Centre (IRC) Visitors Group – promote and support visitors and volunteers

- DEED – global education centre – planning future projects

- Dorset Inter-Agency Concern for Travellers Group (DIACT) – regular meetings and supports projects

- Prisons Work – supported Dorchester prison to host Black History Month event and host visitors to cooks with inmates for Ramadan. Advice/support to other prisons re introducing more multicultural activities

South West Dorset Multicultural Network members regularly support local schools with their multicultural initiatives – involvement for instance in Holocaust Memorial Day & Black History Month where they have worked with 4 local schools and colleges to produce written work, art displays and give presentations. Also advice given to other schools on how to incorporate more multicultural work into their curriculum.

South West Dorset Multicultural Network Annual Community Networking event with speakers. In 2015 it was attended by nearly 40 people including individual community members and those from organisations including Weymouth College and Dorset REC.

South West Dorset Multicultural Network members also represent the interests and concerns of Black and minority ethnic people in South West Dorset at key steering groups, events and forums including: Forum for Equality and Diversity, One World Festival, Prejudice Free Dorset, Dorchester Islamic Centre, Gypsy and Traveller Forum and at consolations/events run by local councils.

Future Plans

- Fundraise for a Co-ordinator

- Holocaust Memorial Day, Gypsy Roma Traveller History Month event, Black History Month events

- School visits and other education work - for instance producing a pack about schools linking with partner schools in more diverse areas of the UK- Improved relations with BME people in Dorset and better knowledge of their needs – getting to know local communities better

- More positive actions to tackle hate crime

- More partner projects - i.e. with DEED and DIACT

- Better marketing of the groups so that more people know about it