Published On: 1 March 2024Tags: , , ,

Mu’minah Iqbal, Policy and Practice Research Assistant, is helping to deliver the Race Equality Foundation racism and trauma project, in partnership with the charity Barnardo’s. The project’s focus is on the impact of racism, trauma and intergenerational trauma on Black, Asian and minority ethnic children, young people and families.

One year on since the racism and trauma project began, Mu’minah reflects on how the project has progressed and shares some recent project updates.

 

The co-production group 

The highlight of this project has been working closely with a co-production group of  young people aged between 14 and 25. This talented and conscientious group have been invaluable in shaping and progressing this project and pushing conversations about racism and trauma forward. We have delivered 11 workshops since April 2023, which have taken place both online and in person. We have completed a number of activities and covered a variety of topics that have encouraged the group to reflect on their experiences and thoughts about the role of racism and trauma in their lives.

One of the big themes we have been exploring recently is the intergenerational impact of experiences of racism on young people and families. One of the activities involved asking the group to explore the cyclical nature of racism and trauma and to create a diagram to represent what this looks like. In order to think critically about this, we asked the group to consider the wider factors that allow thes cycle of racism and trauma to continue, to move away from viewing racism and trauma as happening in isolation. We hope to share the final version of the diagram as one of the project outputs.

We have also been thinking about the concept of trauma informed practice and what good and inclusive support for minority ethnic children and young people looks like, with a focus on recommendations on how things could be done better and how we can tackle barriers.These conversations have been helpful in moving us towards thinking about the next stage of this project.

Our co-production group expressed that they would like to produce a series of podcasts in order to help young people from minority ethnic backgrounds feel less alone in their experiences of the impact of racism and trauma. This should be another exciting opportunity for our young people to further develop their skills and to amplify their voices which has been consistently at the centre of this co-produced research project. The aim for this podcast is to start a national conversation about the role of racism and trauma in the lives of Black, Asian and minority ethnic children, young people and families. We aim to record and publish these in Summer 2024.

 

Research papers

The other main focus of the first part of this project has been producing four briefing papers. The briefing papers include reviews of a collection of UK and international racism and trauma evidence, and findings from our co-production workshops. These papers seek to explore and evaluate the British evidence base around trauma, racism, intergenerational trauma and trauma informed practice. We hope to publish these papers within the first half of 2024.

 

Project plans year two: Identifying and evaluating  trauma informed interventions

Our project is now focused on delivering year twoplans: putting the evidence we have collected in year one into practice. This involves identifying interventions that claim to be trauma informed or we think could be trauma informed that are also aimed at Black, Asian and ethnic minoritised children, young people and families in order to better understand how trauma informed practice is being delivered to our communities. The current literature suggests trauma informed practice is being understood and delivered inconsistently and it is unclear if there are any specific considerations of ethnic minorities needs within the delivery of trauma informed work.

We are currently in the process of securing involvement from VCSE organisations and interventions that meet the criteria. Once we have secured participation we plan to evaluate and observe these interventions. The purpose of this is to identify examples of good practice within trauma informed work that can be taken forward to improve how services and professionals deliver support to minority ethnic communities.

We will also be evaluating our own Strengthening Families, Strengthening Communities parenting programme as part of the evaluation process. These learnings and recommendations will be put into a training guide aimed at frontline practitioners, to be published in the second half of 2024. 

 

Conferences 

On the 9th February 2024, the Race Equality Foundation had the opportunity to present some of the project findings so far at the SEEN X CRED, Leeds Beckett University education and employment conference. I presented alongside my colleague, Jahan Foster Zabit, who is a Senior Researcher at the Race Equality Foundation, and two members of the co-production group, Kiah and Yifan.

We were invited to this conference to share what we have learned so far about experiences of racism and trauma, specifically within school and education settings. It was an exciting opportunity for our young people to develop their presentation and communication skills and to express and share their thoughts and ideas to a room of over 100 delegates from a variety of sectors.

We were able to facilitate a thought provoking conversation with the audience and received positive feedback. Later in the day, I led a reflective workshop with a group of delegates about what trauma informed practice looks like in their fields, and discussed some of the barriers to addressing racism within trauma informed work.

We now look forward to presenting at another SEEN conference in March which will focus on social care, social justice and social action on the 21st March 2024.

This is a free, online event. Sign up here.

If you would like to know more about this project, please contact:  Muminah@racefound.org.uk.