22 Dec Christmas Message 2021
It’s hard to believe that a whole year has passed and we are moving at speed towards 2022. Voice4Change England, like many charities who have been active through the pandemic crisis, looked forward to a period of respite and reconnection with family and friends at Christmas time. Unfortunately we are faced with feelings of Deja Vu, as once again we are staring down the barrel of yet another round of depressing Covid-driven restrictions as a result of the new omicron variant.
In my last message of 2021, I want to give a few thank yous and to concentrate on the positive things that have come out of this year.
Firstly, a big thanks to the staff and trustees of V4CE, who have done a wonderful job in supporting us to deliver emergency support to hundreds of Black and minority organisations who in turn have impacted and improved the lives of thousands of people from Black and minoritised communities. Alongside our emergency Covid work, Windrush has also been part of our resume, as we helped allocate funds to those who provide direct support to victims of Windrush by doing their best to get the victims compensated.
It’s never easy negotiating the bureaucracy of the Home Office, especially on such a controversial issue. More will be forthcoming on this next year.
Secondly, I’d like to say a big thank you to all our strategic partners across the community landscape. Big shout outs go to MIND, Comic Relief, Sport England and the Indigo Trust and School for Social Entrepreneurs. Much of what we achieved in 2020-21 could not have been achieved without you.
Civil society is, as ever, in a state of flux. New legislation is on the horizon in the form of the Policing and Electoral Bills, that respectively – and quite rightly – raise questions about the right to protest and the rights to vote. Our aim is to ensure our members and people in our networks are made aware of the issues and how they potentially create new barriers to democratic engagement.
The road ahead points to an exciting and challenging time in 2022. Let’s hope that the backslide into a possible lockdown is halted and everyone can get back to rebuilding a better society.
Until then, we all at Voice4change England simply wish you a very Merry Christmas and all the best for the New Year ahead.
Director Voice4Change England