Fenland District Council handed £190,000 for two migrant integration schemes - one involving growing fruit and vegetables!

Fenland District Council has been handed £190,000 towards two migrant integration projects - includi

Fenland District Council has been handed £190,000 towards two migrant integration projects - including one which encourages the growing and sharing of fruit and vegetables. - Credit: Archant

Fenland District Council has been awarded almost £190,000 to begin two projects which encourage integration with the district’s migrant community – including one which promotes the growth of fruit and vegetables.

The two projects –‘Grow it, Cook it, Share it, Compare it’ and the Migrant Outreach Service – have been given the green light following the news that the council’s bid to the government’s Controlling Migration Fund (CMF) had been successful.

The ‘Grow it, Cook it, Share it, Compare it’ projects aims to break down barriers between residents and migrant communities by having them work together to grow and cook produce from their cultures, while the Outreach Service will work with migrants threatened with homelessness or who are already sleeping rough, with the aim of reducing the problem and preventing people from returning to the streets.

Councillor Mike Cornwell, Fenland District Council’s portfolio holder for cohesion, said: “The ’Grow it, Cook it, Share it, Compare it’ project will bring people from all different backgrounds and nationalities together through a love of food. It will help people to better understand other cultures and values in an informal and relaxed environment, and promote healthier eating too.

“The Migrant Outreach Service will build trust and confidence with the migrant population and help identify where our support is needed.

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“It will also enhance a lot of good work already happening in Fenland such as Operation Pheasant, a multi-agency project tackling migrant exploitation, helping to ensure issues relating to HMOs (houses of multiple occupancy) continue to be addressed.”

Announcing the CMF grants, Communities Secretary Sajid Javid, said: “Migration brings great benefits to this country but, in some places, significant population changes in a short space of time have put pressures on public services.

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“This new funding will help councils rise to the challenge in a variety of ways – whether that’s tackling the small minority of rogue landlords who damage neighbourhoods with overcrowded properties, providing English language classes to make sure migrants can better integrate and understand their rights and responsibilities or boosting the number of teaching assistants in schools to ensure all children get excellent teaching.”

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