Tag: Erdington

Erdington Social Media Surgery: A volunteer helping a volunteer learn from a volunteer…..

Rinkoo Barpaga at Erdington Social Media Surgery

This is Rinkoo Barpaga, Rinkoo attended the Erdington Social Media Surgery this afternoon for some help telling the story of a project he’s involved with.

In 2 weeks time he’ll be flying to the states to take part in a series of workshops and training sessions with deaf community groups, theatre groups and comedians to learn how they approach putting on events for the deaf community over there hoping to bring the knowledge back to the UK to make things happen over here.

Not photographed is Rinkoo’s interpreter (who politely declined to be in front of the camera) a volunteer who had come along to act as a sign interpreter so that Rinkoo could sit and learn with me as Rinkoo himself is deaf.

It was a productive session which as always was adapted to best suit the person learning but in this instance involved a 3 way conversation and a lot of pointing but  there was something really lovely about how it came together, a volunteer helping a volunteer come and learn from, had it been someone else other than me teaching him, another volunteer.


Birmingham Social Media Surgeries

Lynn Horsnett and Nick Booth
Lynn Horsnett and Nick Booth at Kings Norton SMS

Over the last few years the social media surgery movement has spread further than anyone could have imagined at that first (and supposedly one off) event back in 2008.  There are now surgeries held in 70 different towns and cities all over the uk, and further beyond, in Australia, Canada, Switzerland and even Nepal to name but a few.

But, in the birth place of the Surgeries, Birmingham, there has been another spread happening -less global and more local,  into our communities. In the last 6 months we have been working with partners such as the local strategic partnership and the police across the city and with their support there have been surgeries in:

as well as the continued support for the Central Birminham sessions.

These surgeries have been able to support people where they live and work, to enable them to get online to support the good work that they are doing in their neighbourhoods.

Like Lol Thurstan for instance, he came along asking for help distributing his monthly Neighbourhood Watch newsletter and we helped him set up a blog. Lol is now already exploring the possiblilities of sharing more than just hisNeighbourhood Watch news with his community – taking the idea of a neighbourhood magazine and reproducing it online, and there’s Sandra Turner. Sandra wanted some support promoting her community centre and finding out what was going on in her area. We sat with her while she set up a facebook page and later a twitter account so now she can do just that – it’s enabled her to share information online and make connections with others in her area.

And we’re not done yet. There are more dates already set and hopefully still more to come.  We’d love to see you there whether it to receive some support or to offer your help. You can visit www.socialmediasurgery.com to register to attend any of these sessions, or find one nearer to you.


Training Adults to understand Young People – a new podcast on the Grassroots Channel.

Nicole White and Rourke Holmes of Erdington Constituency Childrens Forum
Nicole White and Rourke Holmes of Erdington Constituency Children’s Forum

Nicole White and Rourke Holmes have been training adults.  They  volunteer with different organisations in the Erdington Constituency of the City of Birmingham to help they appreciate how young people view the world.

The aim is very simple, to improve the relationship between government services and the young people who use them in Erdington.

The Forum began in 2005 when the Erdington Constituency asked a group of young people to set up a consultation in the form of a questionnaire which asked about issues which affect them and their peers. One of the questions was, “Who would you prefer to ask you questions – children, or adults” – and all the children said adults. But it became clear adults lacked knowledge and how to engage with kids in the decision making process.

So the Children’s Forum made a training package for the adults looking at the benefits and barriers of involving children. The Children’s forum then tracked the progress made following the training every six months. They also ran a second training session. Over four years ECCF have reached over 258 adults and 486 children.  This podcast, with Tom Sandars,  was recorded just before the Local Hearts Awards October 2009 – where the group was shortlisted for the award for Young People’s Group.

Until My Dying Day – Nocks’ Brickworks in Erdington – a new podcast on the Grassroots Channel

Mike Overton has fought for years to prevent developers building homes on an old waste tip and clap pit in Erdington in Birmingham, UK. He talks to Emma Lewis of b:cen about the site and why protecting it matters so much to him. Also in the programme a thanks to listeners in Belgrade and Birmingham who mentioned our programmes on their blogs and more information of the Podminions, a podcast channel run by pupils at Kings Norton Boys School.

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