Our Track Record
We have been instrumental in encouraging, motivating and inspiring people to uncover their roots since 2002. We have delivered over ancestry events in England.
Our Strategic Intentions
- help African & Caribbean & British communities gain a sense of their personal heritage and family history
- deliver activities designed to increase intergenerational social interaction
- work with other organisations to help individuals and groups gain greater access to knowledge of their Black and British heritage
- design talks/workshops to support individuals to improve self-esteem and positively influence their social and economic position
- improve access so that people from other cultures can look at the African Caribbean community through a more appreciative lens
Unmet Demand for School Visits
Schools enrich children education by offering activities not prescribed as part of the National Curriculum. Many have contacted Ancestry Talks requesting workshops.
However, schools across the UK are also under tremendous pressure to reduce costs. Few in urban areas classified as deprived (when compared to indices of social deprivation) can afford to commission quality speakers. We aim to work with schools to find ways to improve access to our talks.
The Evidence base for ancestry talks in the community
The Emory University study found that family stories provide a sense of identity through time, and help people understand who they are in the world. Communities will benefit by showing higher levels of emotional well-being having explored their family history.
Source: Emory University, Children Benefit if They Know About Their Relatives, Study Finds
The psychologist Online Magazine reports
Some people want, or feel that they need, a sense of a wider connection to see how they fit into a larger world, both currently and historically (see Affleck & Steed, 2001).
In non-Western cultures, knowledge about previous familial generations is passed down through oral histories, thus maintaining the wider kinship. People can also feel the need for a wider social connection, Silverman et al. (1994, p.547).
A motivator for tracing one’s ancestors can be that this allows people to contact relatives they have lost touch with or to discover new relatives. Ludvigsen and Parnham (2004).
the loss of certainty, of one’s own potential, of health and the belief in one’s own immortality, or of a significant other can spur us to research our roots: Powell and Afifi (2005).
Exploring ancestry may be an attempted solution or coping mechanism. In this way, the desire to search is a move towards ‘mental health, wellness, and congruence’ (Krueger & Hanna, 1997).
Fitzhardinge (2008), suggests that it is the ‘way we make sense of’ stories that is the ‘very essence of identity’. He describes the heart of resilience as ‘the ability of a person to understand their story in such a way that it creates opportunity rather than limits it’.
Fitzhardinge (2008) advises, ‘A sense of self is constantly evolving and successful adaptation requires that narratives of self are rethought and retold periodically in ways that better fit the current developmental needs’ (p.66).