Diversity House, with support from the Heritage Lottery Fund, has developed this intergenerational project in order to create greater social cohesion in Swale and give people a platform to pioneer interculturality and an appreciation for the cultures in the UK.
Using the Benin Masks, on display at the British Museum, as an iconic emblem, our participatory researched project will encourage learning, documenting and celebrating the rich and diverse cultures of the Nigerian people and their relationship with the British (both pre – and post – colonial).
People from all ages and backgrounds will have opportunities to share and expand their understanding of cultural identity and heritage. We will look at the cultural history and heritage of the Benin, as a focal point to explore this civilisation from the height of its glory in the 16th century to the present day. We will be focusing on African ethnographical collections, particularly those of Benin, collected in nineteenth and early twentieth centuries and held within the British Museum and the Powell-Cotton Museum in Birchington, Kent.
Events and activities include; Guided tours and Educational Workshops at the British Museum, workshops and tours at the Powell-Cotton Museum, developing online learning resources and worksheets, training in advanced research skills, interactive workshops and seminars on themes such as monarchy and governance, celebration of Nigerian culture, Historical guided walks around swale, exploring histories, arts, crafts, clothes and other objects available from Africa and Nigeria.
SWEW is a group of totally committed women of all ages eager to promote a positive image of women in Swale and Kent through information and knowledge sharing, equality and diversity, understanding, respect, reaching out, sharing support and advice and socialising. SWEW aims to help disadvantaged women to tackle isolation, improve their life chances by providing opportunities for enterprise, self-employment, employability, new skills, community participation and improved lifestyle choices.
The project supports women to;
- Explore and develop their own business ideas and career goals
- Enhance their interpersonal skills and personal development
- Build confidence and self-esteem
- Gain focus and get motivated
- Increase their opportunities to network and gain alliances
- Information exchange
- Learn how to influence people, handle gender issues in the workplace and much more!
The project aims for women to achieve all of this through networking, training, workshops, talks, 1 to 1 coaching and mentoring. We also encourage women to volunteer their time and expertise to help others with any of the above. We welcome enquiries from individuals who would like to become volunteers to help with this project. By volunteering with us you are not only making a huge invaluable contribution to your community, but also have an opportunity to boost your career options and develop invaluable social and professional skills.
Another of Diversity House’s activities is the conversation club. It aims to build confidence and develop the interpersonal and communication skills of all participants. Participants are able to practice communicating with others in a comfortable and relaxed environment and by taking part in the various activities on offer, participants are also able to have fun and socialise. Often sessions are run in our drop in centre; however the club can also take place in cafes, on walks, in parks etc.
Diversity House aims to help people into work or enterprise and make sure that work pays. In return, people on out-of-work benefits need to take the opportunities available to them to move off benefits and into work therefore improving their economic prowess. Out of work older people can find it more difficult to get a job and they are more likely than younger people to remain unemployed for longer. Also women can find it difficult to go back to work after long term caring for children and families.
For all the above reasons we have introduced the Work Club set up with the support of the DWP to address the different impediments or blockades to employment. The Work Club provides flexible and personalised support for both benefit and non-benefit claimants who need more help to find and stay in work.
Work Club delivers an 8 week program around confidence building and behavioural motivation; CV writing; job searching; goal setting and action planning; interview techniques and mock interviews; communication and presentation skills; and work ethics etc.