The primary focus of the project was to address the imbalance in equal opportunity in the fields of education, training and employment as within the framework of the Tower Hamlets Community Plan, Strategic Plan and Regeneration Strategic Objectives. This project, in concept, goes right to the heart of mainstream equality issues that Tower Hamlets Council seeks to address. These are breaking down barriers to improve employment and training opportunities; increasing key skills and employability within disadvantaged groups though advice, guidance, capacity building, and various employment training services and projects.
This project in particular reached a very hard to reach group, who are practising Muslim women, who under normal circumstances are not reachable and lose out on services and training as a result. The project quashed this difficult barrier through persistent one-to-one outreach work, and successfully reduced religious misconceptions and ignorance that existed within the community with regard to practicing Muslim women entering education and employment.
It is also to be noted that the project’s success in engaging the target population lies in its user-friendly manner and culturally sensitive approaches. Even though present performance is excellent and is ahead of targets, the project is taking stock of its successes, continuously learning and is moving forward ahead of with the project in 2008.
This is an LBTH corporate match funded intervention now in its third year, targeting mainly the disadvantaged from the Bangladeshi and Somali communities, especially women.
The project has worked very creatively to work around religious and cultural sensitivities which was made possible because staff had unique access to the target group through the Darul Ummah Community where a large number of Muslim women access other services.