Updated: Jul 23, 2022
I was born and lived in Birmingham for the first 18 years of my life. After working in the field of education in the south of the country on and off for 20 years, I returned to the West Midlands, residing and working in neighbouring towns within the region.
Though employed in different roles, I’ve been settled in my home since 2008 and on 1st April 2022 I launched Aluna Behaviour Consultancy, consolidating all of my experience in the classroom and as an Advisory Teacher for three local authorities. My tagline is: My aim is to help and support anyone who wants to change behaviour for the better. Historically my work has been with children and families, but I have also engaged professionally with adults requiring assistance to meet the current needs for their emotional wellbeing. I'm also committed to equity and inclusive practice in all settings. Please visit my website aluna-abc.co.uk to find out more about the work I do.
Now this is probably the understatement of the year, but “Birmingham has CHANGED!! The city centre has undergone a huge transformation over the years. Is it just me who gets a penalty notice for each trip I make that takes me into a bus lane I didn’t know existed until I was in it?! The established buildings continue to exist like the Town Hall and the Rotunda, now alongside shiny glass and metal structures that have taken us into this momentous decade.
Both personally and professionally I’m mindful of the detrimental effect of social and emotional issues, wellbeing and mental health, for children, young people, adults and the elderly compounded by our current social crises. Sadly, in some cases those who were already at breaking point have now been tipped over the edge. I believe that the full extent of these repercussions has yet to be seen. Not to ignore the remarkable selflessness of “essential workers” who have kept us all going. Also those amongst us who have simply “paid it forward” from the goodness of their hearts. What a couple of years it’s been!! These were my New Year sentiments in 2021.
Now life has resumed – as much as it can right now – we’re all paddling hard to move forward, or in some cases just to stand still. With small businesses and charities having been impacted so dramatically, their great work is being affected by depleted bank accounts and shortages of staff. I have volunteered with one organisation or another since the age of 14 and it’s painful to hear that so many volunteers are being turned away as there are insufficient funds to keep the office, shop or service open. Where do their clients go?
In the last few months, I’ve attended some fantastic networking events; some focusing on diversity, women in business, education and entrepreneurship. I’ve been very pleasantly surprised to learn of the plethora of services available, whether in the private, public or voluntary sector, though so many are well hidden. I assumed that this was due to my nomadic employment experiences in the late 90s and early 00s. However, it’s been just shy of 15 years and I’ve remained in education for the entirety of my working life thus far. So, I solicited some feedback from the friends I’ve made through work who have remained in the area.
Many of the organisations I mentioned they hadn’t heard of and, likewise, the services that are on offer. While networking I’ve come across some high-profile practitioners who they didn’t know about either. This has been particularly Black business owners and service providers, women in education, the community and opportunities for potential access to financial investment.
Therefore, I’m on an endeavour to gather information from those small organisations – and larger ones too if you’d like – so that professionals like myself can signpost those in need and work in partnership with others to optimum effect. My intention is to circulate the existence of voluntary organisations, especially those experiencing the challenges of getting to “the new normal” and would benefit from a little more exposure to potential users of their services and reciprocal promotion opportunities.
The Diverse Enterprise Hub promotes services of benefit to the communities we live and work in to improve the lives of those within them. Fundamentally I’m reaching out to groups, teams and agencies in and around the Birmingham area. I’d also like to extend this invitation to relevant participants (including those in other locations) whose services can be successfully accessed online – one of the more positive outcomes of a long period of social restrictions!!
The majority of us have a deficit of time to investigate and collate this information – that’s where I come in, along with any volunteers for whom this time-intensive task will not send them running to the nearest darkened padded room!! This is on the basis that those of you who already possess talents in marketing, networking, event management, advertising and publicity can also do their stuff. It would be great to secure some funding to host an event at some point in the future. Perhaps we'll be able to elicit Nigel Huddleston, the government minister for charities, youth, sport and tourism to be willing to explore the concept of a suitable funding stream.
I really hope you'll assist with this. In the first instance can you contact me via LinkedIn, Facebook or Twitter, on my website aluna-abc.co.uk or by email at firstname.lastname@example.org with Diverse Enterprise Hub in the title. This invitation extends to private and public services, should your approach be ethical and congruent with this vision.