Norwich Integration Partnership

Funded from June 2015- June 2018 by the Big Lottery and the Tudor Trust, the Norwich Integration Partnership comprises of New Routes, English Plus and The Bridge Plus+ –  three organisations in Norwich that work at grassroots level. Each offers distinct but complementary services to people from ethnic minority communities, who are often isolated and marginalised. Through experience and consultation with participants and service providers, the three have identified the need to work in partnership to improve integration support to individuals and families navigating the problematic divide between arrival and living a full functioning life in the Norwich community.

Key barriers to successful integration include lack of English language skills, cultural awareness and understanding, self-confidence and familiarity with how services operate in the UK, in addition to social isolation, closely linked to a lack of opportunity to interact with the host community; as well as experiences of racism. Many from these communities have experienced trauma and family separation, disrupted education and employment, and health issues, with uncertainty surrounding immigration status and finances.

NIP offers pathways of support to address the multiple disadvantages and challenges faced by recently settled migrants with complex needs. The support and services include: information, advice, advocacy and race equality work (The Bridge Plus+), integrative language development education (English+), and one to one and group activities with skills development opportunities and personalised one-to-one support (New Routes International Friendship Groups, Mentoring & Befriending Programmes).

The formal working partnership strengthens the capacity of the partnership to improve working practices through sharing information, resources, time and expertise and to influence other mainstream providers in the field, with the aim of improving service provision and delivery to new communities in Norwich.

 

Activities

New Routes:

  • Mentoring & befriending programme
  • Celebration events for the programme
  • Regular Mentor/ mentee group activities
  • Mentor/befriender 2-day intensive training
  • Monthly volunteer meetings and regular individual supervision
  • International Friendship, skill-building activity workshops with English language support and regular consultation visits from local service providers during term times
  • Ongoing support and signposting to community activities and services
  • New Communities Awareness training to local service and work-placement providers
  • Lead organisation for the Integration Partnership providing coordination and overseeing financial, administrative processes between partners

 

Bridge Plus+:

  • Information, Advice and Guidance service face to face and one to one
  • Monthly community lunches with learning/ networking opportunities embedded
  • Community consultation/engagement events during the year
  • Volunteer roles: 6 community IAG champions in Year 1, 1 ICT club volunteer, 10 volunteer cooks + explore volunteer admin assistant roles
  • Volunteer capacity building through training and workshops: food safety training, IAG/advocacy skills + facilitate access to other opportunities through links with relevant organisations (eg First Aid, safeguarding)
  • On the job coaching for volunteers by staff plus involvement in project design and monitoring (steering groups/research/ admin work etc)
  • Employment support/ ESOL for job search group activities – with input from external trainer
  • 1 jobs fair each year
  • Ongoing support and signposting to community activities and services

 

English+:

  • Regular English language classes and arts and crafts classes building community and conversation
  • Regular group social activities and outings

Ongoing support and signposting to community activities and services