Vernon Community College is a city centre based, innovative college, delivering a high standard education and support to their students as well as local communities in Nottingham. They offer a variety of courses ranging from ESOL, IT to Customer Service, and Construction. They always go the extra mile to meet personal needs of their pupils, providing a selection of enrichment and leisure activities to develop interests and skills. Michael Henry, our Director has had a long relationship with Vernon Community College and helped them grow over the years, therefore we welcomed the opportunity to work collaboratively with them.
College is also a very diverse learning environment, with students from many parts of the world including Eastern Europe and Africa. With hate crime on the rise in the post-referendum reality, it is important that we educate individuals and explain how to respond to incidents they might face. Raising awareness is especially needed in multicultural and migrant communities, who are at the increased risk of becoming victims or witnesses of hate crime. Awareness training is therefore a great addition to students curriculum.
Learn and report
Our Hate Crime training is a service developed as a part of the Big Lottery funded Building Stronger Communities project. Our half – day awareness training focuses on definitions of hate crime and incidents devised by agencies, information about monitored strands of hate crime, where and how it takes place, and why it is important to report it. After these sessions Vernon Community College students will:
- Understand hate crimes and their impact on communities and individuals
- Be aware why it is important to report hate crimes
- Understand the role of organisations, communities and individuals in supporting hate crime reporting
- Have a better knowledge of support services available of victims of hate crime
However the aim of this ongoing project is not only to increase the awareness about hate crime. A part of our work at Vernon Community College is setting up a third party reporting centre. We will be available to students to take reports of incidents and present them with information about long term support for victims.
Making communities stronger
Hate crime has a devastating, psychological and also economic, impact not just on individuals but whole communities, as it sends a message that the entire group is not welcome. Ability to identify hate crime and confidence in reporting is therefore an important aspect of restoring community cohesion. It fosters mutual support among its members and sends a strong message that hate crime will not be tolerated. We believe that our work with Vernon Community College will boost students confidence and equip them with necessary skills to become upstanders.