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Coventry University Students’ Union wins award

Coventry University Students’ Union proudly announces that its Volunteering Department has won the Voluntary and Community Award (large organisations) at the Coventry Community Cohesion Awards 2012 for their project “Bridging Cultures”.

The Bridging Cultures Project was a language and cultural project aimed at improving integration amongst secondary school pupils of different nationalities. The project, funded by the British Council through the European Union’s Youth Action fund, managed 14 student volunteers who taught 5 different languages in 4 Coventry secondary schools to pupils of mixed ages.

The project, which also aimed at showing the differences between the UK and other countries in a positive light, has helped reduce the segregation of children in schools and helped improve relationships between school pupils, teaching staff and the school community.

There have been a number of successes from “Bridging Cultures”, for example, changes in attitude of the pupils, the unexpected involvement of teaching staff, and the professional development of the student volunteers who were leading the sessions.

Corinne Gordon, Volunteering and Employability Manager, said “We are absolutely delighted to have won this award. It recognises the hard work and creative skills of our international student volunteers, the benefits of partnership working and the impact that can be made within the community on bridging cultures.

The classes have been very popular not just with school pupils but with teachers too. Teaching staff have been keen to attend the classes, learning more about the places their pupils are from and gaining an understanding of the culture, history and cultural norms”

The Coventry Community Cohesion Awards celebrate people and activities that contribute to building cohesive communities and recognise the significant contributions they make towards cohesion in the city.

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