Birmingham researcher to explore the future of black community organisations


A sociology researcher at Birmingham City University is set to investigate the value and future of African and Afro-Caribbean community organisations in Britain.

As part of the project, sociologist Shey Grant will spend nine months undertaking an ethnography, which will see her shadow volunteers of the Organisation of Black Unity (OBU), exploring their workplace practices and culture.

School of Social Sciences

Birmingham City University

Founded in Birmingham in 2013, OBU works with black communities to support their welfare and wellbeing, as well as challenging racism in today’s society.

Shey, originally from Sherwood in Nottingham, hopes her research will raise awareness of how organisations like OBU are crucial to local communities.

“Systemic racial inequality is still in existence in the UK, with ongoing issues arising from this inequality that are yet to be effectively addressed”, said Shey.

“Black organisations provide black communities with the space to articulate and share their own personal experiences, along with guidance in placing these experiences within the wider narrative of what is required for black advancement.”

Shey is one of 50 ‘STEAM Scholars’ at Birmingham City University, whose research is funded as part of the University’s £3 million initiative to create new subject knowledge and to power cultural, societal and economic improvements in the West Midlands.

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