Communities - cohesion and integration

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Introduction

Our aim is to ensure Peterborough is a welcoming, safe and healthy place where everyone, no matter their background, can have access to the same opportunities.

In 2018 Peterborough became one of the government funded integration areas, along with four other local authorities - Walsall, Bradford, Waltham Forest, and Blackburn with Darwen. Integration areas are places with diverse communities that understand their local challenges and have a desire to try new things.

Belonging together

We are currently having a conversation in Peterborough about our communities and future.

We are discussing the following four themes:

  1. Increasing Economic Opportunity - with partners in the business community and DWP we will improve economic opportunities. For example we will:
    • Increase the number of employers signed up to the national Disability Confident Scheme
    • Help people into work by offering English language classes for those who need it
    • Develop a programme of career fairs with leading local employers
    • Help people develop new skills through volunteering
    • Enable parents to take advantage of employment opportunities by raising awareness of free or affordable childcare.
  2. Bringing Communities Together - with neighbourhoods and communities we will  develop community leadership, and put communities at the heart of decision making - ensuring we protect the most vulnerable. For example we will:
    • Deliver a Communities Fund - to enable communities to bid for funds to support local initiatives that bring people together
    • Develop a New Communities Strategy to ensure new developments support the creation of strong communities
    • Manage and control numbers of Houses of Multiple Occupancy (HMOs)
    • Create a local approach to governance so that community organisations can come together to deliver shared aims
    • Develop a community asset based approach with ‘local connectors’ who can identify and build on the existing strengths within their communities.   
    • Launch a ‘time credits’ initiative improving opportunities through volunteering, and to enable better access to leisure and cultural activities.
    • Develop community and faith champions to tackle Domestic Abuse and Sexual Violence (DASV) - supporting victims, raising awareness and improving reporting
  3. Young People - with young people we will improve understanding of the challenges they face in relation to integration. We will strengthen the voice of young people in informing local decisions. For example we will:
    • Undertake a youth survey to better understand integration issues in education settings
    • Strengthen the role of the Youth Council and the Children in Care Council to enable them to influence policy impacting integration
    • Develop a ‘prepare for life’ curriculum offering support for navigating challenges when young people leave home
    • Build on the National Citizen Service to support and enable young people to see themselves as a citizen of Peterborough
    • Establish a Young People’s Interfaith network
  4. English Language - we recognise that, in order for communities to be truly integrated, the ability to easily communicate is vital. 35% of young people in Peterborough speak another language at home and overall 5% of the population tells us that they don’t speak English well. We will commission research to better understand the needs of existing and potential learners to ensure we offer the right opportunities in the most appropriate and flexible way.

Inclusive Cities

Peterborough City Council is also one of six cities also taking part in the Inclusive Cities programme, which is being led by Compas (Centre on Migration Policy and Society). The other cities are Glasgow, Cardiff, Liverpool, Bristol and London.

The programme is providing an opportunity to share learning and understanding about how cities in the UK and the USA experiencing significant population change as a result of inward migration, develop inclusive and welcoming communities.

Community events 

Every year Peterborough holds various community events from Diwali festivals to the Christmas lights switch on. For further information about these events visit the Community events page.

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