“The Club” Youth Group in Normanton, (for Roma, East European, and local communities) celebrates its 1st Anniversary


The area around Pear Tree Road is well-known for its wide variety of cultures, many of which have been established for decades. In the last few years the district has seen an increase in the population coming from a number of East European countries, and particularly from their Roma communities. Typically they had been living in poor housing conditions, and been subjected to various levels of persecution and racial discrimination. Moving to Derby, to escape this, was been seen by many as a route for a better life for their family.

Their numbers have grown as the new arrivals have chosen to seek accommodation as close to their extended family members as possible. This has inevitably led to a rapid change in the demographics of the Normanton and Arboretum areas, and an increase in the number of youths who will naturally gather as part of their community based culture. Although some steps have been taken, integration with the other ethnicities is a slow process and so opportunities exist for some disquiet in the district.


Groups of youths in the street, from a number of communities,  were the cause of some concern by the local residents and the Police became involved in discussions on this situation. In the wake of this dialogue a decision was taken by the Minister of the Pear Tree Baptist Church, Elizabeth Pinder-Ashenden, together with the Multi-Faith Centre ( based at the University of Derby) and Roma Community Care to try and do something to help the youths, particularly from the new communities, during the winter months. The success of this was greater than they expected, and a year later it remains popular and continues to develop. Recently they marked their 1st Anniversary with a party at the Church.  Although the majority of the people attending are Roma, the Club is available to all local youths with the intention of promoting better integration.








Derby Festé 2013: celebrating diverse communities through music, street theatre and dance.

The Citizens’ Eye Derby team were invited to film aspects of  Festé 2013. Festé is an international arts festival that takes place in Derby. It brings internationally recognised artists to the streets of Derby in September each year.

Festé is organised by a consortium of four local arts providers in the city; Derby Quad, DEDA, Derby Live and Derby Theatre. It is funded by Without Walls, a national street arts consortium funded by the Arts Council.

Alex Rock from Quad explains what Festé is and why it’s important for the people and diverse communities of Derby.

Local arts groups have the opportunity to share the billing too. Our team spent time following two local community dance groups who were involved in Festé; Hoverla, a Ukrainian dance ensemble, and Surtal Arts, a South Asian Arts dance development agency. We wanted to understand how and why they were involved, and what being involved in Festé means to Hoverla and Surtal Arts, and members of the Ukrainian and South Asian Arts communities.

For more information about Derby Festé visit www.derbyfeste.com

“People want a life, not a service”

“People want a life, not a service”  is the tagline given by Neil Woodhead, the Project Manager for Derby’s new concept of Local Area Co-ordination [LAC].

This core idea is fundamental to the work of LAC, as it helps vulnerable people to identify and achieve their vision of a good life, with as little intervention from official services as possible and more reliance on their own skills and contacts, including community resources, such as neighbours, local associations and other support networks.

Does this sound like a hark back to ‘the good old days’ when communities supported each other and worked together to take care of their more vulnerable members? There certainly is a strong element of that old-fashioned ethos in this new-fashioned style of working that Derby City Council is piloting in two areas of the City: Alvaston and Arboretum.

In the following film, we hear from a few of the residents who have received support from project workers, Raj and Simran (based respectively at Arboretum and Alvaston libraries) to move away from being mere service users, into creating a good life for themselves integrated within the community.

To find out more about the project contact Neil Woodhead on 01332 642565 or send an email to neil.woodhead@derby.org.uk.

Shining Stars 2013

Shining Stars is an annual event that takes place in Derby during Volunteers’ Week.  It is organised by the Volunteer Centre Derby team at Community Action.

Volunteers’ Week is an annual campaign, which takes place on 1-7 June and celebrates the fantastic contribution millions of volunteers make across the UK.

This year’s Volunteers’ Week focused on saying ‘Thank You’ to the millions of volunteers who regularly contribute to society, and to recognise the way that organisations celebrate the work of volunteers across the UK.

Now in its third year, Shining Stars is a celebration event to recognise the contribution that volunteers make to life in Derby.  The event was held at Deda in Derby on Wednesday 5 June.

Victim Support

The Mayor of Derby, Councillor Fareed Hussain – pictured above with volunteers from Victim Support – presented the awards to the volunteers, who represented 26 different voluntary organisations in the city with 100 volunteers receiving certificates and awards.

Citizens’ Eye Derby was asked to get involved this year. We filmed a series of short interviews with the nominators and asked the question; “just why have you nominated this person?” and more. Take a look at the film below

For more information about Shining Stars contact Community Action on 01332 346266