This week at our Birmingham office we have Qasim on work experience, and Jack volunteering. I asked them both to tell us what it’s like being a young person growing up in Brum and gave them a set of questions to think through. Without seeing each other’s they’ve reflected on some similar things – like access and parks! Here’s what they said…
My name is Jack Smith. I am a practicing Christian living in Kings Heath Birmingham. The best thing about this area is all the parks that are not only really close by but kept in excellent condition so it is really fun to go and enjoy them. I practice my faith by going to church on Sundays and during the week doing bible studies. I also enjoy celebrating the Christian events such as Christmas and Easter.
My favorite thing about living in Birmingham is how easy it is to access everywhere simply by hopping onto a bus or walking a short distance. It is therefore very easy to go to the cinema or visit friends who may live on the other side of the city. I am very lucky in that there is very little if anything wrong in my neighborhood. The only thing that could be added to improve the area would be a wider range of 6th Forms because at the moment the options for local ones are very limited. Overall I would say there are quite a lot of opportunities for young people in Birmingham despite there not being many 6th Forms in my area across the city there are a range of options plus many good secondary and primary schools. There are also many leisure activates such as swimming pools and parks.
If I could change one thing about my area it would be to improve the relationships between my area and other nearby areas. While Birmingham is a very multicultural city there is lots of division between the different communities. Young people from Kings Heath very really get to know people from other areas of the city and this holds true for most of Birmingham. I think that it is a shame that people from different areas don’t mix and this is therefore something I would like to change.
Hi, my name is Qasim Khan and I am practicing my Muslim faith in Sparkhill. The best thing about living in Sparkhill is that all my family live and have been born in Sparkhill therefore all my family and cousins are close to where I am so that I will never feel alone. My community is a very loving, they helps each other out. My community is not only Muslim but also Christian and Sikh. All of us as a community get along and understand each others’ faiths and understand one anothers’ boundaries. The month of Ramadan is upon us and every Muslim including me are all fasting. In my opinion is that it is easier for me to fast when everyone around me is also fasting so not for a second I do not feel left out. In Sparkhill there are many mosques for Muslims to come and pray and peacefully practice our faith. The best thing that I like about Birmingham is the parks. The parks in Birmingham are very clean and treated correctly and looked after. Also the good thing with Birmingham is that it is a very safe and welcoming community I feel very safe in Birmingham wherever I am in the city. One more thing that it is very easy to access everything meaning that you know where to find everything.
The one thing I find negative about my neighbourhood is the litter that is on the floor; there is too much litter on the floor in Sparkhill and has been complained about many times but no further action of the litter has been taken. In Birmingham there is a lack of opportunities for young people to do in their spare time. There are some things, like after school clubs and Saturday clubs, but in my opinion I think that there should more clubs for younger people so that they stay active. If I could change 1 thing about Birmingham is would have to be the litter on the floors and getting it cleaned up.