Launched in March, the programme recognises inspiring projects that strive to make a positive impact in the local community. The selected projects also share the mission of Birmingham 2022; bringing people together, improving health and wellbeing, helping the region to grow and succeed, being a catalyst for change, putting the region on the map.
New projects include Everyone Can Dance, delivered by Para Dance UK, which encourages involvement in dance as a recreational activity by making it completely inclusive and enjoyable for all abilities. The project includes hosting inclusive dance sessions and choreographing performance pieces, as well as offering training for dance instructors to develop skills in teaching all abilities, including those people with disabilities and impairments.
Another selected project using the performing arts to bring people together is B-Side Hip Hop Festival, a free annual festival led by the Birmingham Hippodrome. Held in the city, the festival features outdoor hip hop performances, interactive talks and live graffiti art. It provides a platform for both local and global artists and unites a young, diverse audience. To encourage further involvement, the festival also holds workshops, talent development programmes and volunteering opportunities.
Other projects recently added to the United by Birmingham 2022 programme focus on providing opportunities for young people. BrumTing, a project by Nechells-based charity Free@Last, supports young people in developing, running and growing a business and creating a sustainable income stream; Friday Night Youth Club, hosted by The Inspire Group in Walsall, offers multi-sport activities and a space to improve social and mental wellbeing; and Changing Lives Through Rugby, a project run by Erdington Rugby Club uses sport to tackle important issues facing young people in Erdington, including anti-social behaviour and violent crime.
The final four projects that have been added to the Birmingham 2022 community programme include:
- Mayday Mamas which hosts a 21 Day Challenge offering group exercise and nutrition education to new mothers.
- PLP Wellbeing Academy, delivering an active wellbeing programme and bringing sport and physical activity into living rooms across Birmingham.
- Keep Halesowen Beautiful, a group of volunteers who regularly come together to clear litter across Halesowen.
- Opportunities for Liberating and Developing your Potential (OLDP) which set up women-led enterprises for careers in the built environment, offering work experience and volunteering to encourage women and girls to make the step onto the career ladder.