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National Citizens Service

A team of National Citizen Service (NCS) participants took to the streets of West Bromwich on Wednesday 12 July on a campaign to raise awareness about Dementia with help from some of the most notable organisations from across the country and for these young people, it all started with them saying “Yes”. Tarique Ramsey-Braithwaite, part of Team Reiss and one of the many young people who became the first ‘wave’ of summer participants on the 2017 programme, talks about their experiences.

The National Citizen Service is a government-funded initiative that brings together schools, community organisations, businesses and individuals to build a stronger and more cohesive society. NCS is a three-part programme for 15-17 year olds that provides unique benefits for personal development. It’s an unforgettable experience which builds confidence and independence and the programme runs during summer, autumn half term, and autumn term time.

As part of the NCS programme, the team undertook volunteering at Dingle Meadows Residential Home in Oldbury. Throughout our time we spoke to residents and were told stories of their lives and their experiences of noticeable events like the World Wars.

Throughout our volunteering time, all members of the team became aware of how Dementia affected the residents, their families and the care staff. As our own awareness about the condition grew, we planned, organised and hosted a Youth-Led Dementia Awareness Campaign Day, which we called ‘Never Forgotten’. Our campaign raised awareness about Dementia within the local Sandwell community, raised awareness of organisations that support those who are affected by dementia and, where required, we signposted individuals to these organisations, and we raised awareness and signposted community organisations and local businesses to access support to become involved in making their services more dementia friendly.

Our team received various forms of support from community organisations and local businesses. We would like to ‘Thank’ Birmingham Dementia Action Alliance, Sandwell Metropolitan Borough Council’s West Bromwich High Street Market, Dementia UK and Alzheimer’s Society for their generous contributions.

Team Reiss’ experience was a unique and life-changing opportunity. We were empowered and inspired to achieve through monumental challenges and was able to make a positive impact within the local Sandwell community. Therefore, we would encourage young people, local businesses and community organisations to become involved with the NCS programme. Visit, contact your local NCS office in writing at 52 Charlotte Street, Birmingham, B3 1AR or email

Our final ‘thanks’ goes to NCS and The Challenge for allowing us to experience this unique opportunity and to be able to represent them through their programme and dedicated work for young people.

Homeschool Social Enterprse – Food Bank

At Homeschool Social Enterprise (an Independent Christian Primary School) we run a weekly food bank through our ministry – Active Christians, where we offer food for those people who need it with the goods donated to us. 

Our supplies vary each week so please contact us for details on how you can donate goods to support this or if you are interested in becoming a volunteer with us or to find out more about this service by:

Telephone: 07500416635/ 0121 649 1599

For more information on what other services we offer please go to

Women’s Aid and Facebook Join Forces To Help Keep Women Safe Online

Women’s Aid, the national domestic abuse charity, and Facebook are launching a new guide to empower women to stay safe online.

The guide by Women’s Aid and Facebook provides advice to help women and girls understand the risks and tools needed to protect themselves and stay safe on social media. The guide has a lot of helpful tips – from how to report something that is abusive, to stopping an intimate, private or sexual image from being shared online. It aims to help women take greater control of their own safety on Facebook, whilst staying connected to the people and causes they care about.

The guide is specifically designed to provide information and advice to survivors of domestic abuse. Whilst the online world should be open and safe for everyone to use, many women experience domestic abuse online. Though many survivors are already experts at managing their own risk and safety, Women’s Aid and Facebook have brought together some specific steps they can take to protect themselves online.

Polly Neate, Chief Executive, Women’s Aid said: “Online abuse can be just as harmful and disturbing as abuse perpetrated in person, so we’re delighted that Facebook is working with us to tackle this issue. We hope the practical advice in this guide will help women feel safe and confident using social media. We want to ensure survivors experiencing online forms of abuse, coercion and control know that they can get help and support from Women’s Aid and Facebook.”

Caroline Millin, safety policy programmes at Facebook, added: “We know that perpetrators of domestic abuse can abuse partners or ex-partners online. This behaviour is unacceptable and against Facebook’s Community Standards. We’re proud to be working with experts like Women’s Aid to empower women to stay safe online.”

The guide is available to download at

Source: Charity Digital News

Sandwell and West Birmingham Equality Awards 2017

Did you know nominations for the Sandwell and West Birmingham Equality Awards 2017 close on Wednesday 26 July?

The categories are:

• Learning Disability Award
• Partnership Award
• Statutory Sector Award
• Voluntary Community and Faith Sector Award
• Primary Care Award

Not heard about the Awards?  Click here to find out everything you need to know.

The Awards Ceremony will be on Thursday, 2 November.


Rise of The Social Seniors Confirmed In New Report

Charities are urged to ensure they’re using the right methods to attract the right audience after an Ofcom report revealed record numbers of older people are embracing smart and social technology.

Over a quarter of over-75s are using tablet computers, and half of online baby boomers have already taken to social media according to Ofcom’s annual Adults’ Media Use and Attitudes report, which reveals how people use, understand and feel about the media and communications they rely upon each day.

This year’s report shows striking growth in older people’s use of technology between 2015 and 2016. Baby boomers aged 65-74 are increasingly connected, with four in ten (39%) using a smartphone, up 11 percentage points in a year.

There has been a sharp rise in over-75s using tablets, from 15% to 27%. And the use of smartphones among this age group has nearly doubled, from 8% to 15%.

Nearly half (48%) of internet users aged 65-74 now have a social media profile. Among over 75s, the proportion with a profile has nearly doubled – from 19% to 41%.

Around nine in ten (87%) social seniors aged over 65 opt for a Facebook account, but a smaller proportion use WhatsApp (6%) and Instagram (1%).

But while 44% of over-75s go online, more than half do not, and most of these (86%) have no plans to do so.

Social savviness

While older internet users are increasingly active online, some older people lack online confidence. A fifth (20%) of people over 65 describe themselves as ‘not confident’ online, much higher than the average (7%).

One reason could be that many older users are new to the internet. Some 21% of internet users over-75 went online for the first time in the last five years – twice the wider average.

For those older internet users lacking confidence, this is particularly pronounced when managing personal data. Almost one in five internet users over 65 say that are ‘not at all confident’ about this.

And 16% of internet users over 55 said they ‘never’ consider the data or privacy implications when posting photos online – the largest proportion to say ‘never’ among all age groups.

Some older internet users were also unsure about sponsored links in search results. A quarter (27%) of search engine users aged over 75 said they were unsure, and less than half (46%) felt able to identify sponsored links.

Similarly, awareness of personalised advertising seems to be lower among some older users – with seven in ten (72%) over 75s, and six in ten (60%) 65-74s saying they were unaware of this type of advertising, compared to the average of 44%.

Source: Charity Digital News


Less Than 1% Of UK Charities Are Protected Against Email Fraud

Fewer than 1% of UK charities are adequately protected against the risks of being targeted by fraudulent emails and phishing attacks, according to the findings of a new report published by platform-as-a-service provider Red Sift.

The organisation analysed more than 78,000 email domains of UK charities to establish how many of them implement email authentication protocols to protect their organisations and their donors from cyber-attacks. Overall, under 1% of them have implemented email authentication with DMARC – Domain-based Message Authentication, Reporting & Conformance.

The Top 100 Charities showed a slight increase in adoption (5%), however, none were blocking unauthorised email. The finding follows the recent publication of a UK Government report which found that fraudulent emails (72%) and phishing attacks (27%) were amongst the most common types of breaches suffered by UK businesses, further highlighting the huge risks posed to the £70bn UK charity sector and the 67% of the UK population who engage with it.

Rahul Powar, Red Sift CEO, commented: “Fraudulent emails and phishing attacks pose a serious risk to businesses and the data that they hold. As such it is very concerning that UK charities, that make huge social and economic contributions despite often working with limited resources, are so exposed to these potentially hugely damaging attacks.”

To read the full Charity Digital News article click here

Homeschool Social Enterprise – Child-Minding Services

At Homeschool Social Enterprise you can have peace of mind whilst your child engages in the joy of learning, curiosity and imagination!

Homeschool Social Enterprise run an Independent Christian Primary School registered with the Department for Education (DfE).  Its central aim is to educate and support children with a rich and varied education along with strong Christian values to prepare them for life.  The school offers a diverse range of services for all age groups including tuition, childminding and community support.

Following the EYFS guidelines, a wide range of activities (tailored to the age and stage of each child) is provided including communication games, arts & crafts, role play, messy play, singing, dancing, child and adult led activities, baking and promoting healthy eating and lifestyles. There are also regular trips to local parks, libraries, museums and more.

For further information or to discuss the childminding services call on 0121 649 1599 or email at

Visit the website to find out more about Homeschool’s current range of services at

Homeschool Social Enterprise – School Places For September

Are you looking for a new school place for September?  Homeschool Social Enterprise still has spaces left for children aged 5-11 for September 2017.

Homeschool is an Independent Christian Primary School and its central aim is to educate and support children with a rich and varied education along with strong Christian values to prepare them for life.

The school’s initiative is designed to combat underachievement that is common within schools.  Unlike traditional mainstream schools, there are smaller class sizes, a curriculum programme tailored to each child and a work ethic that reflects working life after school. You could say it truly has a child centered focus.  So whether your child is a Gifted and Talented pupil, or suffers with a learning difficulty, Homeschool can place them on a programme to see that they reach their full potential.

Contact Homeschool to find out how it small class sizes can benefit your child.  As an inclusive school it accepts children of all abilities including SEN and prepares them for Mainstream and Grammar school.  The school has a proven success rate and targeted programmes to support all children to achieve that next level.

Call 0121 649 1599 or email at to find out more about its services. Alternatively, why not take a look at the website at

Sandwell Together Against Hate

Safety chiefs in Sandwell are urging people to report all hate crimes so victims can receive the support they need.

The Sandwell Together Against Hate campaign promotes different ways people can report incidents, which can take place anywhere and to anyone, whether they are face-to-face, on the phone, online or a verbal or physical confrontation.

You can report incidents by phone or online – or at many centres in the community that have been trained to deal with reports. Organisations in Sandwell are taking a ‘zero tolerance’ approach to hate crime and working closely together to support victims.

A hate crime is an incident that is motivated by prejudice, where someone is targeted because of personal characteristics such as disability, gender identity, race, religion/faith or sexual orientation.

Find out more

Beat It Percussion CIC: PRIME Cymru Growth Business Award

Social enterprise, Beat It Percussion CIC is delighted to have been shortlisted for PRIME Cymru’s Growth Business Award. Their mission is ‘to improve people’s lives through the medium of group music activities. Through our workshops people experience physical and cognitive skills, gain confidence and experience social inclusion.

Based in Herefordshire Beat It is establishing a presence in the West Midlands and is currently delivering taster sessions across Sandwell. Beat It Percussion runs Dementia-friendly sessions for older adults at community settings and exciting new projects are in the pipeline. Over the last year, Beat It Percussion has grown significantly in turnover and scope and has recently recruited and trained a team of local volunteers and a new music practitioner. The organisation also works across the border in Wales hence the connection with PRIME Cymru.

PRIME Cymru (the Prince’s Initiative for Mature Enterprise in Wales) is the Prince of Wales’s charity that supports people over the age of 50 to start their own business or find employment.

‘’PRIME Cymru supports such a wide range of fantastic businesses and the Awards give us the opportunity to celebrate them and to thank them and our mentors for all the hard work they do,” said David Pugh, Chief Executive, PRIME Cymru. The Awards categories for 2017 are:  New Business, Growth Business, Green Business and Mentor of the Year. The results will be announced on 11th July.

Lynn Kay, Beat It’s CEO says ‘’Being shortlisted for this award is significant because it recognises not only my work but also the great effort put in by Beat It’s Directors, volunteers and practitioners who have all been instrumental in our success over the last year. Older people often face loneliness and isolation. Drumming Together gives people the chance to come together to play drums, chat and enjoy mental and physical exercises which are really good for retaining skills and flexibility. This programme is becoming recognised as a significant development in supporting people who are at the early stages of dementia.’’

To find out more please contact Lynn at Beat It Percussion on 07875 090946 or via email at

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