Testimonials

Sarah Parker, Inclusion Manager, Royal Collection Trust, February 2019

Culture Awareness Training at St James Palace

It was a great pleasure working with Trishna at Sikh Sanjog to deliver Cultural Awareness Training at The Queen’s Gallery London on behalf of the Inclusion Programme. Trishna used her experience of growing up in the UK as a Sikh woman to deliver four separate training sessions to the front of house Visitor Services Team. She skillfully led engaging discussions whilst challenging stereotypes and assumptions regarding the lives and experiences of Sikh communities. It was incredibly enlightening and fascinating to hear her life story. Staff were encouraged by Trishna to ask any questions that came to mind. They were all answered openly and honestly. Overall, the staff learnt what barriers the Sikh communities may face in visiting Royal Collection sites and how these might best be overcome and applied to their daily front of house roles. Trishna helpfully explained the difference between cultural and religious belief equipping the staff with information and the right form of words to deal with a sensitive situation. The staff feedback was incredibly positive. For many, it was not at all what they had thought a training session would be, it was so much better.

 Ultimately, it was a very meaningful and valuable experience. It has given the Royal Collection confidence to offer further cultural awareness training sessions exploring other faiths in order to break down cultural barriers to visiting Royal Collection sites. I am profoundly grateful to Trishna for travelling from Scotland to London to deliver this training. I do hope that we can continue working with Trishna and Sikh Sanjog in the future

University of Edinburgh

I think the work Sikh Sanjog is doing is very valuable as it targets a minority group within a minority group, something which is all the more poignant in the current political climate. It supports women with such a diverse range of issues, from having a community through to mental health issues.

Tineke Broer – Research Fellow University of Edinburgh

Glasgow Coalition for Racial Equality and Rights

Sikh Sanjog have been a valuable member of the Scottish Parliament’s Cross Party Group on racial equality for many years now, and have contributed to a large number of issues. They bring a perspective on issues that reflects the actual lived lives of their particular service users, and this insight is essential in developing better policies and practices on racial equality in Scotland. It is especially useful to have the views of minority ethnic women articulated in the Parliament, and Sikh Sanjog is one of a very small number of groups who is able to relay this voice directly to members of the Scottish Parliament.

Jatin Haria – Glasgow Coalition for Racial Equality and Rights

Police Scotland

Having previously had limited personal knowledge on Sikhism… Sikh Sanjog have been able to offer a clear perspective relating not only to the religious requirements of the faith but also barriers faced by women in particular. Their latest report, ‘the invisible women’ has been helpful in understanding such key issues. I also feel I have developed a trusting relationship with Sikh Sanjog whereon both formal and informal discussions can take place comfortably. The interaction with Sikh Sanjog and guidance from them has been productive and positive and will continue to be invaluable to assist me in supporting my frontline colleagues.

Constable Grant Robertson – Police Scotland

Scottish Labour Party

Sikh Sanjog provides an invaluable service to the Edinburgh based Sikh community, particularly women and young people. Their understanding of what the community needs and the lived experiences of those running the services is what sets it apart from other support services. Community based support, coming from the community itself, is hugely empowering and a model we should be looking to support and sustain.

Whether it is youth work, services to support vulnerable women, opportunities for women to develop new skills or their enterprising Punjabi cafe, Sikh Sanjog are a crucial part of the Leith, and wider Edinburgh, network and I hope they will continue to exist and grow for a long time to come.

Kezia Dugdale MSP – Ex-leader of the Scottish Labour Party