As today’s my last day working on CiftC project – Phase One, I’ve been reflecting on the work we’ve done. One of my tasks involved analysing and collating the data of Black Ethnic Minority (BME) focused projects identified across Greater Manchester. This so we can report on the findings.
The initial data collecting was quite overwhelming due to the large number of projects that were identified. However, once I started tallying the data, I realised that the actual number of BME focused projects was not as large! I also noticed that the number of BME focused projects increased over the years.
Some examples of the type of information I collated include: number of Heritage Lottery Funded (HLF) projects, number of responses, type of grant scheme, number of projects by year, number of projects by ethnic group and the number of oral history element within projects.
What I learned by collating the data is the patience and concentration that’s required. This is because sometimes the data needed to be updated and modified due to changes that occurred. This meant recounting and amending everything as the information seemed to interlink.
I believe that data collecting is important because it allows you to make sense of information. Moreover, you can create graphs and tables using the data collated. Graphs and tables are a very effective way of reading and drawing conclusions.
The Archive and Records Association (ARA) conference is currently underway at the Hilton Hotel in Manchester. Yesterday my colleague Hannah Niblett and I were invited to give a paper about our experiences of generating and archiving BAME-related heritage project work. It was our first chance to share findings from the CIFTC audit, as well as reflect on the successes and challenges of work on the erstwhile Legacy of Ahmed project. Some of the points we were able to make appeared to resonate with the audience, comprised of 60 professionals from the archive and local studies sector. Questions, claps and nods of agreement centred on discussions around the way that oral histories are collected and valued and the widespread disposal of much project-related material.
You may have noticed that things have gone quiet on the project over the last few weeks. That’s because we’ve been busy analysing all of the data from our research, in order to report on our findings for the official audit report. Unfortunately the deadline for submitting findings to the HLF coincides with our funding application for Phase 2 of the project. So it’s been a hectic few weeks! However, we’re almost there and look forward to being able to share information with you shortly. Please stay tuned…
On Thursday 27th July we showcased the work of 9 groups as part of our annual community history sharing event. Each group is in the process of delivering or completing a Heritage Lottery Funded project, with a BAME focus. Representatives (including group leaders, volunteers and academics) shared their experiences with the wider public via stalls, talks and a group discussion. Feedback from participants has been extremely positive and will contribute to research for the next stage of the ‘Coming in from the Cold’ project. Thanks to everyone who contributed to make this such an enjoyable and rewarding event.
I met a lot of people and have seen there is a real passion for collecting and sharing stories, regardless of background.