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WAES celebrates Black History Month

In the UK, October marks International Black History Month, and the focus this year revolves around the theme ‘Before Windrush.’ This theme delves into the experiences and narratives of Black individuals residing in the UK prior to the 1948 arrival of the Empire Windrush.

The International Black History Month UK (IBHM-UK) organisation was established in June 2020 by a collective of Black Britons driven by their dedication to unearth and curate the concealed and overlooked narratives from Britain’s Black past. Their unwavering commitment lies in elevating the prominence of Black History Month UK within both the Black British community and the broader population of the United Kingdom. Their mission is to guide the course of Black History Month UK, ensuring its vibrant existence as an essential starting point for educating individuals about the remarkable achievements and contributions made by people of African and Caribbean heritage to the history and culture of the UK. In particular influential women within these communities.

As a result there are a number of events taking place across London. For more information and events visit EventBrite.

Here at WAES we designed a selection of posters commemorating modern influential African and Carribean people such as; British Broadcasting Executive and Vice President of Content at Netflix Anne Mensah, Dame Sharon White first ever female chair for John Lewis, Michaela Coel Actress and many more. These were all framed in all three of our centres as well as a Black History Month display board created by our Careers and Learner Development Team.

Additionally, within our ESOL classes, students engaged in classroom-based activities centered on the significance of Black History Month. They explored its origins, its relevance in today’s generation, and other related topics. Learners also roamed the college, capturing images of informative posters and responding to questions related to the material.

In our CCL department, students were encouraged to work in pairs or groups, where they tackled challenging vocabulary through reading and translation exercises using the posters. They utilised tools like Google Lens, Google Translate and Oxford English dictionaries to facilitate group discussions.

Simultaneously, our small business team in the Diversity and Inclusion department was busy crafting Tote bags inspired by Black History Month, using African-patterned material.