City to celebrate its community champions
Leaders, charities, voluntary organisations and businesses across Liverpool are coming together to celebrate the success of the Community Champion Programme and learn how they can better engage with minority communities.
The Community Champions Programme was set up by the Department for Levelling Up, Housing and Communities to support minority communities unproportionally affected by the pandemic and boost vaccine take up.
In Liverpool, the programme focused on building trust, communicating accurate health information and developing new networks of trusted local champions where they didn’t already exist.
Through the recruitment of a dedicated team of Community Champions, we have seen:
• A 20% increase of vaccination among minority communities
• The development of new minority community leaders
• Creation of a platform for consulting minority communities on development and improvement of services.
Next week, Liverpool Town Hall will host a very unique event which will not only reflect on the achievements of the programme and celebrate the people who made it happen, but also provide opportunities for organisations and services to learn how they can develop a more inclusive offer, increase the impact of their programmes and overcome barriers they may have when engaging with minority communities.
Cabinet Member for Health and Social Care, Cllr Frazer Lake said “The Community Champions Programme offered us an invaluable opportunity to build up much stronger engagement with the minority communities and be involved more in two-way conversations.
What originally started as part of Liverpool’s response to Covid-19 is now part of a much bigger story.”
Director for Public Health, Professor Matthew Ashton said “The appointment of Community Champions was crucial to increasing vaccination among minority communities.
They helped with translating messages and dispelling myths into community languages – spreading information wider than we’d ever seen before.
We’ve had amazing support at the mass vaccination events, with positive experiences then being shared through community networks – which in turn encouraged others to attend and ultimately helped save lives.”
The event will also celebrate different cultures through their food, music, singing, dancing and poetry!
The following community organisations are part of the programme:
- Chinese Wellbeing
- Granby Toxteth Development Trust
- Fire fit Hub / Torus Foundation
- Irish Community Care
- Liverpool Arabic Centre
- Merseyside Polonia
- Merseyside Refugee Support Network / Asylum Link
- Merseyside Society for Deaf People
- Merseyside Somali and Community Association
- Pagoda Arts
- Refugee Women Connect.