What the need was & how we identified it
The Park Ward of Halifax, a diverse community, with a range of cultures living together and in recent years an ever growing population of Eastern European families.
There are families who have little or no Fire Safety information or knowledge of the importance of smoke alarms in the home.
Partnership development with Children’s Centres and Refugee hubs has shown us the growing need for education and home visits within these communities.
The evaluation of recent Home Fire Safety Checks highlighted a need for translation work with Fire service staff reporting language barriers at visits.
What we did & the difference we made
An awareness day was scheduled with the help of Jubilee Children’s Centre, who guided us on families with little or no English Language. Visits were conducted with 6 families over the course of one day. Prevention teams and translators worked together to share our Fire Safety messages and fit smoke alarms in homes.
All families that were visited required at least one smoke alarm and all received valuable safety information that they were not aware of before.
By working in partnership with both the local children’s centre and translators we were able to break down a common language barrier and ensure the safety of everyone within those households.
The project was a great success and very well received by both the public and our partners.
There is every intention of repeating the event on a regular basis.
An interview was conducted with one of the family members a few weeks later – this is what Martina told us…..
“I learnt so much from the visit, especially about closing doors on a night time, I didn’t know this before. There is no education offered by the Fire Service in Czechoslovakia and we didn’t use smoke alarms in our home. Since the Fire Service visited me I have shared the information with friends and two other families have also had visits, one where I translated”
Keys to our success
Each District within West Yorkshire will have similar challenges with regards language. By working in Partnership with other organisations, all striving for a common goal, we’re able to reduce the risk and heighten awareness through education. Focused initiatives in high risk areas where a clear message is being delivered using the skills of our partner agencies.