A NEW project has been set up to ‘bridge the gap’ in communicating essential Covid-19 safety advice to Slough’s BAME (Black, Asian and Minority Ethnic) communities.

The project, #OneSlough, will be delivered by Slough Council for Voluntary Service (Slough CVS) and Apna Virsa – both voluntary sector organisations – which will work with group and faith leaders to communicate essential health messages such as handwashing, wearing facial coverings and social distancing to BAME communities.

The latest NHS advice will be shared and conveyed through both English and multilingual platforms – such as radio and live interviews with multilingual GPs – to reach those who do not speak English as a first language and might be missing out on crucial safety measures.

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Chief executive for Slough CVS, Ramesh Kukar, said: “Using trusted sources of information, including multilingual GPs, we hope to bridge gaps in communication and ensure everyone has the tools to stay safe.”

Additional messages centred around health and wellbeing, including controlling existing conditions such as diabetes, losing weight and quitting smoking, will be part of the project.

The #OneSlough project is also in partnership with Slough Borough Council, NHS East Berkshire Clinical Commissioning Group, Berkshire Public Health team, and Primary and Secondary care partners.

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Project manager for Apna Virsa, Seema Kamboj, said: “Following the recent Government report, we know that those from BAME backgrounds are at a higher risk of poor outcomes from Covid-19.

“Slough itself has a significantly sized BAME population, and we recognise the area’s unique challenges, including language barriers and cultural differences. So, working in partnership, we hope to help communities to stay as safe as possible at this uncertain time.”