UEL teams up with Newham Citizens to get students in campaign mode

St Antony's Primary School pupils performed in front of London

Newham Citizens, which has supported living wage campaigns from St Antony's Catholic primary's pupils, has teamed up with UEL. - Credit: Caroline Teo

The University of East London has teamed up with the organisation behind the living wage movement to teach students about campaigning.

UEL announced its partnership with Newham Citizens, which is part of Citizens UK, yesterday (January 20).

Richard Harty, dean of the school of education and communities, said: “Our aspiration has always been for our graduates to become outstanding community leaders and this is a fantastic opportunity for all our students to learn the skills and techniques behind these successful campaigns."

Newham Citizens will be offering leadership training workshops to the students as part of teaching the tools and skills of community organising.

Citizens UK has campaigned on the real living wage, affordable housing, refugees, mental health and affordable credit. A current aim is to get a living wage for care workers.

The borough's branch has worked on a number of campaigns including a CitySafe scheme encouraging Stratford Centre businesses to commit to their premises becoming "safe spaces" for young people.

It has also worked with pupils from St Antony's Catholic primary school in Forest Gate on living wage campaigns.

Alistair Rooms, community organiser at Newham Citizens, said: "We are excited to have a selection of inspiring speakers at these workshops which will hopefully show the students that anyone from any background can make a difference."

One guest speaker, Luljeta Nuzi, came to London from Albania in 1999 and went on to found the Shpresa Programme which promotes the Albanian community's integration into the UK.

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The training is to give practical examples of how ordinary people are transforming communities across east London and aims to motivate them to put their new-found skills into practice.

Gail May, director of the office for postgraduates, research and engagement, said: "The community leadership training provided by Citizens UK gives our students insight into working with communities and developing strategies to effect change in areas and on issues they feel passionately about."