In the following assignment I will attempt to produce a community profile, which will be based on the Hawbush Estate in Brierley Hill in the West Midlands.
The Hawbush Estate in Brierley Hill in the West Midlands was built by the Brierley Hill District Council in the 1930’s.
I chose to create a community profile on the Hawbush Estate because it is local to where I live and over the last couple of years I have read in the local newspapers about local facilities closing down near the estate, which include a local leisure centre and an urban farm. Many companies around the area have also closed resulting in a high number of people living on the Hawbush Estate being unemployed.
I have changed the names of any people I have wrote about in this assignment to protect their identity.
My observation from walking around the Hawbush Estate
The first time I walked around the Hawbush estate it was at 6pm on one Friday evening in October 2010, during this time I noticed that there were quite a few young people who had congregated in the play area located near Hawbush Primary School.
There is only one shop on the Hawbush Estate; I decided to go there to talk to the shopkeeper about the community who live on the Hawbush Estate.
When I was walking towards the shop on the Hawbush Estate I noticed that there were five young people sitting on a wall opposite the shop, the wall was full of graffiti, one of the five young people who was female asked me if I had a spare cigarette I could give her, I replied that I did not smoke.
I asked the girl if she liked living on the estate, she said that she liked to hang around with her mates on the wall, as they have a laugh but other then that there was nothing else to do.
I went inside the shop on the Hawbush Estate, which sells general food items, newspapers, alcohol and tobacco; I noticed that there was no fresh food items for sale in the shop at that time.
I asked the shopkeeper if he knew the young people sitting on the wall opposite his shop, he said that he knew them all, as they would very often go into the shop.
I informed the shopkeeper that one of the girls had asked me for a cigarette, the shopkeeper said that they sometimes ask people who are going into the shop to get cigarettes or sometimes a bottle of cider for them when they have some money, the shopkeeper said that the young people know that he would not serve them with alcohol and cider as they are underage.
The Hawbush Estate has no local youth centre, however, there is a community centre on the Hawbush estate, when I arrived there it was closed, so I wrote down the contact number for the centre which was displayed on a notice board outside the centre.
I telephoned the Hawbush Community Centre the following Monday, and talked to the lady who was the manager of the centre. I explained to the Community Centre manager that I was creating a community profile for the Hawbush Community, and I asked her if she had the time to talk to me about the Hawbush Community.
I asked the manager about the people that access the community centre, the manager said that the centre is currently used every week by Rainbows on Wednesday evenings, a karate club takes place every Tuesday evening, a needlework group during the daytime on Mondays, and sometimes the centre is used for jumble sales to raise money for local causes.
Meeting with a local resident
I made arrangements to see a lady called Jane at home, Jane is a single parent who lives on the Hawbush Estate and lives with her 3 daughters. I first met Jane a few years ago when she was volunteering at a food bank.
Jane has been living on the estate for 38 years, she has her own council house now on the estate but was raised on the estate when she was younger, Jane expressed that she was worried because the government are going to cut her benefits because she has school age children and is unemployed.