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The importance of charities within our community cannot be understated. They work tirelessly to improve the quality of individuals’ lives as well as our national life by providing incredible services to a countless number of people. Therefore it is our duty as citizens to work with and support charities in their ambition to create a fairer and just society.

With this in mind, I decided to host a Charity Fair in Southall on the 12th of August. Having previously held a similar event in 2013, it became crucial that we built on our past successes to keep the positive momentum going. The Dominion Centre, which hosted the event, became flooded with colours and energy as over 20 local charities set up their stalls in the main hall to display and explain their work to the general public. The huge variety of services on show meant that people from all walks of life could gain something from the Fair. If you were interested in local health and fitness the ‘Southall Football Club’ were there to fill you in on their recent projects, but if it was legal advice you were searching for then the ‘Ealing Law Centre’ were ready to answer your questions.

Yet it was not only the public that benefitted, because the fair created a platform for the charities to network and forge relationships amongst themselves as well as with a number of political leaders, including Seema Malhotra MP, Leader of Ealing Council Cllr Julian Bell and Deputy Mayors and Councillors from the London Borough of Ealing and Hounslow – all of whom came to show support for the cause. This unique networking opportunity brought a diverse group of community leaders together in one constructive space thus facilitating greater unison within the community.

 

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Charities by nature are often outside of the limelight, and so the event was concluded in a spectacular manner with a special recognition award being presented to the charity ‘Contact a Family’, alongside a cheque of £2075. The charity was nominated for their longstanding and dedicated service to the local community, with funds being raised through generous donations by members of the public, local businesses and the Barclays bank Southall branch.

Asha Yadav, Contact a Family Ealing Manager, said: “We are delighted to receive this award in recognition of the work we do supporting Ealing families with disabled children. Contact a Family supports families with disabled children, whatever their condition and whenever they need us. Last year we helped over 500 local families with issues including getting support for their child. And we organised 13 fun events and days out, bringing families together so they don’t feel alone. We are very grateful for the award money which will help us to put on more family fun days next year.”

 

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The work of ‘Contact a Family’ and the many other local charities serve as a reminder of the significant role that charities play in our society. Their constant strive towards the betterment of our society must be recognised, upheld and supported. The Charity Fair 2016 was a positive step towards doing this, and we will without a doubt continue our project in the near future.  

If you would like to find out more information about the event or the charities that attended, please contact my constituency office on 0208 571 1003.

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Community Charity Fair 2016

The importance of charities within our community cannot be understated. They work tirelessly to improve the quality of individuals’ lives as well as our national life by providing incredible services...

Ealing Southall MP backs call for local action to improve the care and support for people with diabetes and provide more access to diabetes education Ealing Southall MP, Virendra Sharma MP, has backed a call by Diabetes UK for local action to improve the delivery of life-changing education for people with diabetes. Evidence shows that going on a diabetes education course can help people manage their condition more effectively and reduce their risk of developing devastating complications, enabling them to live a long and healthy life.

Virendra_Sharma_MP.jpgMr Sharma attended Diabetes UK’s parliamentary launch of its State of the Nation 2016 report, which has highlighted that the vast majority of people with diabetes are not getting access to an education course to give them the tools they need to effectively manage their condition.

The report found that in 2014-2015 only 2 per cent of people newly diagnosed with Type 1 and 6 per cent of people newly diagnosed with Type 2 diabetes were recorded as attending a diabetes education course. Diabetes UK say this is a huge cause for concern as people with diabetes only spend around three hours with a healthcare professional every year and for the remaining 8,757 hours they must manage their diabetes, which is a serious and complex condition, by themselves.

Diabetes UK is urging clinical commissioning groups (CCGs) to put in place an action plan to improve take up of diabetes education for people living with diabetes in their communities and ensure people are supported to manage their condition effectively.

Mr Sharma said:

Diabetes UK’s State of the Nation report shows that many people with diabetes are still not getting the support they need to help them manage their condition. This is leading to thousands of people with the condition developing life threatening health complications such as blindness and amputations. This is not only personally devastating to those affected but is also leading to huge costs to the NHS.

Action is needed so that all people with diabetes can have access to education as well as their key health checks. This is why I will be writing to NHS health leaders in my area asking them to commit to ensuring more people are attending education courses.”

Robin Hewings, Diabetes UK Head of Policy, said:

We are pleased to have Virendra Sharma MP’s support on what is a very important issue. The poor state of diabetes education is fuelling a health crisis that if left unchecked threatens to bankrupt the NHS. Ten per cent of the NHS budget is spent on diabetes, but about 80 per cent of that is spent treating complications such as blindness, amputation and stroke. Not enough is being invested in good healthcare which could prevent these complications in the first place. Our State of the Nation report shows that with better integrated services and support to enable people to self-manage their condition, the NHS can save lives and money. We are encouraged by the inclusion of diabetes care in the forthcoming CCG Improvement and Assessment Framework (CCG IAF) and we are calling for local clinical commissioning groups to implement these measures as a matter of urgency. With the right support in place, people with diabetes can lead long, healthy lives.”

The State of the Nation report can be downloaded at www.diabetes.org.uk.

You can support Diabetes UK’s State of the Nation report by clicking the following link and calling

for local decision makers to provide more access to diabetes education.

Virendra Sharma MP; Improve the care and support for people with diabetes

Ealing Southall MP backs call for local action to improve the care and support for people with diabetes and provide more access to diabetes education Ealing Southall MP, Virendra Sharma...

On Tuesday 12th July, Virendra Sharma MP from Ealing, Southall joined other MPs in showing support for The Council of Europe Convention on preventing and combating violence against women and domestic violence (known as the Istanbul Convention). This legislation requires the UK to take measures to prevent violence against women, protect women experiencing violence, and prosecute perpetrators.

DSC_0154.JPGThe Istanbul Convention Parliamentary lobby was an event run by the IC Change campaign, a campaign for ratification of the Istanbul Convention, which raised awareness about the Convention’s importance and where MPs heard from survivors. The campaign aims to secure the ratification of the Istanbul Convention (IC) in the UK.

Research states that on average, two women in England and Wales are killed every week by a current or former male partner. In Scotland in 2014/15, 1,797 rapes and 104 attempted rapes and 59,882 incidents of domestic abuse were recorded by the police. In Northern Ireland in 2014-15 there were 2,734 sexual offences recorded, including 737 offences of rape, and 13,426 domestic abuse crimes were reported (approximately 13% of the overall crime in Northern Ireland).

 Virendra Sharma MP said:

I have always campaigned for the protection of women and girls, and I want to help end violence towards women and girls both in the UK and globally. The figures that show that we still have a long way to go, but we can do something to make society a safer place. I’m committed to showing my support to making the Istanbul Convention UK law. You can also show your support by signing the petition.”

Rebecca Bunce, co-director of the IC change campaign, said

This law is about women's lives. It is easy to forget when talking about legal technicalities, but ratification is really about women being able to live free from violence and free from the fear of violence."

She continued “With the promise of the Istanbul Convention, we have already seen progress from the UK government with legislation on forced marriage, psychological violence and female genital mutilation (FGM). We can't stop now. With uncertain times ahead it is all the more vital that there is a clear legal framework to help end violence against women. We urge the UK government to finish what they started and ratify the Istanbul Convention."

Jenn Selby, a journalist, campaigner and survivor who attended the lobby, reflected:

When I think of all the brave women I've met on my way through the system, how many years we'd all been waiting for court cases that didn't happen, all the while deprived of our human right to adequate mental support, I wonder how many of them made it.”

The legal framework did more to see our perpetrators walk free than to keep us alive. This is not justice. Ratifying the Istanbul Convention would end this.

Not only would the Istanbul Convention mean a government commitment to the adequate funding of women's services and a stronger survivor-led prosecution service, but also commitment to prevention programmes - so the violence doesn’t happen in the first place.

This is a life or death situation. The Istanbul Convention is the best legislation currently in existence and it will increase our chances of survival significantly. ” 

For more information on the IC Change campaign go to : http://icchange.co.uk and @ICChangeUK on Twitter.

Virendra Sharma MP shows his support to end violence against Women and Girls

On Tuesday 12th July, Virendra Sharma MP from Ealing, Southall joined other MPs in showing support for The Council of Europe Convention on preventing and combating violence against women and...


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