Present Projects

Rights Respecting Schools
Sans Frontières/Sin Fronteras! – French & Spanish engaging with the wider world
Embedding the global dimensions and sustainable development in the Secondary Curriculum
York Young Peoples' Action Group

Recent Projects

9 x 9 x 9: Building Global Connections
Trade Justice
Better by the Year
RE-viewing the World
Widening the Circle


(Migration Project kindly funded by Scurrah Wainwright Foundation and Awards4All)

The nature of our project: 

The main aim of the project ‘What have migrants done for Yorkshire? ’ is to directly benefit the community by challenging and educating people about the real and positive contribution that refugees and asylum seekers have made. The project was born as a consequence of the mounting refugee crisis that continues to dominate the UK media and political arena. This in turn impacts on our personal response which may be influenced by media frenzy, scare mongering and misinformation. There is a failure to recognise that the UK has always been a country associated with migration. This project challenges misconceptions and shares its resources and impact through our website and Facebook Page. These are dedicated to the contributions of past and present Yorkshire based migrants.

The project:

  • Created a Migration workshop that was delivered to community groups in York and the surrounding areas. The content shared the ‘push and pull’ factors connected with why a person migrates as well as clarifying terminology and grounding the activities in human rights. 
  • Allowed the voices and stories of migrants to be heard first-hand and as a consequence challenged misconceptions, discrimination, racism and inequality.
  • Improved communication between people allowing issues of distrust and fear associated with migration to be addressed.
  • Permitted personal reflections and responses to the crisis and considered possible solutions/answers in the light of human rights and global citizenship.
  • Benefitted Yorkshire community by raising awareness and appreciation of the importance of cultures, traditions and shared values that enrich, strengthen and add support to the community. A project outcome is the sharing of our migration activities and stories.
  • Promoted equality, mutual respect and consideration that nurture community cohesion.
  • Helped create greater social cohesion/integration as a result of cultural interaction. (A celebratory conference is due to take place in 2018).
  • Enabled the workshop content to be freely downloaded from the CGE website, ensuring that the benefits and impact are sustainable and can be used by other groups and communities.

Information about the project has been sent to Scurrah Wainwright Charity(SWC) giving details of the 35 workshops and 900+ participants that have been involved. Key findings include a lack of awareness of the positive impact migrants have made and continue to make to Yorkshire and rest of the UK. We are extremely grateful to the migrants who have been part of this project. We thank them for their courage in sharing their stories and allowing them to be heard by others. A fuller report will be presented to our other funder Awards4All in the Spring of 2018. To read the cover letter sent to SWC please click here. For the SWC project report click here.


Prior to delivering a workshop each community group was asked to do some preparation. This invovled recording any places they or their families had migrated from both within and outside the UK. The groups were also asked to consider why the migration had taken place and what benefits were drawn from it, both from a personal and community perspective. A total of 1024 participants took part in 35 workshops. We have analyzed the data and can conclude the following:

1. Places individuals or families have migrated from to York and the surrounding area.

Out of the 1024 participants, 167 had migrated from within the UK and 157 from overseas. This means that just under 70% of participants had no personal experience of migration. The project saw participants linked with over 42 different overseas countries, the most common being the USA, Cyprus, Australia and Germany. Internal UK migration to Yorkshire involved people mostly moving from Scotland, London and Wales. Those who had experienced migration with the UK did so from again over 42 counties or UK countires. Please see the data represented in a piechart and graphs below.

2. Reasons why people moved to York and the surrounding area.

Numerous push and pull factors were recorded by the participants ranging from family reasons to war. There were over 26 factors recorded, although some of these have potential cross overs such as jobs/employment with promotions. Of the 324 participants that had experienced migration only 132 were able to offer a reason for it. These have been recorded in graphical form and include the top four factors as: Employment, Family, Marriage and seeking refuge from war. Other minor reasons include weather, pets and crime. It was obvious from the data that a significant reason for people moving to Yorkshire, was for the environment and cheaper properties in comparison to places like London. North Yokrhsire also has a number of RAF and Army bases which brings a regular flow of forces personnel and families into the area from other UK or overseas bases and as such these are a factor recorded within the project data.

3. The personal and community benefits associated with migrating to York and the surrounding area.

Participants were less able to record the benefits linked with migration, with only 29 records for personal and 33 for community recorded during the project.This means that over 962 individuals, that is the majority of project particiants had no ideas of the benefits of migration. Such a low recording has implications both for those within the project and those not. CGE generated this project as a consequence of negative media associated with migration and migrants.Likewise those who campaigned for the 'Leave Brexiters' utilized negative images and ideas associated with migration as a key factor to further persuade the UK population. The project findings clearly demonstrate that the population of the UK have had little information shared about the significant contributions and benefits that migrants can and often do bring to their new communities. The project findings clearly demonstrate that the population of the UK have had little information shared about the significant contributions and benefits that migrants can and often do bring to their new communities.There is a low level of information relating to this and a strong need for it to be addressed.

Of those benefits recorded, migrating to Yorkshire often provided better relationships with family and friends, improved education and better roads and housing. In terms of what migrants bring to Yorkshire, we see them involved in Governing positions, education , NHS, working in charities and paying taxes back into the system to work for the country and Yorkshire itself. Significant benefits that are worthy of acknowledgement and recognition by everyone in the UK.

4. Well known migrants to Yorkshire

CGE also recorded participants recordings of known Yorkshire migrants they knew. The list comprised 99 entries with Archbishop Sentamu(originally from Uganda) being recorded 17 times out of the 99. The next well known Yorkshire migrant was Frederick Belmont, a Swiss baker and confectioner who founded Betty's in 1919. Others included Michael Marks, originally from Belarus, who founded Marks and Spencers. M&S humbly began as a market stall in Kirkgate, Leeds. Other migrants were listed including teachers, football and cricket players, university lecturers and many more. Just like many places in the UK, migrants have and will continue to contribute positively to our communities.

Archbishop Sentamu, Frederick Blemont (founder of Bettys) and Michael Marks ( foudner of M&S) -well know migrants to Yorkshire


Below are the stories of people who were not only brave enough to travel to a new place, learn another language, immerse themselves in another culture but also wanted to share their story so others know that they are not alone! Pick click on the person's name to download the story.














Embedding the global dimensions and sustainable development in the Secondary Curriculum

“I want to learn about real things that are happening in our world”

“The problems in the world are massive and scary. I want to make sense of them and why they are happening”

“It’s important to learn about the planet when we’re young because we have big imaginations”

…….quotes taken from recent MORI pupil survey on behalf of DEA and pupil voices in QCA global and sustainable planning guides (2007/9).

Schools will specifically benefit with:

  • Support in planning and running thematic days or weeks at KS3 to deliver the GD/SD incorporating the Millennium Development Goals
  • Support to connect the GD/SD to the other six whole curriculum dimensions of Identity and Cultural Diversity, Healthy Lifestyles, Community Participation, Technology and the Media, Enterprise, Creativity and Critical Thinking. Recognising “Individual dimensions should not be considered in isolation as they are often interdependent and mutually supportive” QCA 2008
  • Support to develop planning at KS3 by providing exemplar cross curricular themes and topics which can be customised for your own school
  • Enabling teachers to access CPD in school to support the above and also to develop further participatory teaching and learning approaches leading to developing critical thinking skills and more coherent learning experiences for pupils.


Charity Registration Number 1155653