South Shields women’s group gets £38,000 to help fight Islamic radicalisation and internet grooming

Apnar Ghar annual general meeting at South Shields Town Hall. Guest Northumbria Police and Crime Commissioner - Vera Baird
Apnar Ghar annual general meeting at South Shields Town Hall. Guest Northumbria Police and Crime Commissioner - Vera Baird

A women’s group in South Tyneside has been awarded £38,000 to raise awareness of radicalisation and internet grooming.

Members of Apna Ghar were stunned when Northumbria Police Crime Commissioner, Vera Baird, announced the news at the group’s annual general meeting which was held at South Shields Town Hall yesterday.

Everyone is thrilled to bits with the news.

Carol Robertson, centre manager, said

Ms Baird had been invited along to give the Ocean Road based group a talk on her Victim’s First referral service and after her speech she delivered the good news.

Carol Robertson, centre manager, said: “Everyone is thrilled to bits with the news. I got a five minutes heads up that the announcement was coming, but everyone else was so surprised.

“We had placed a bid a while ago asking for some help, as we were struggling because we depend on funding, but I don’t think any of us expected this amount.

“Ms Baird said that she liked what Apna Ghar was all about and what we were trying to do.”

The cash, from the Supporting Victims Fund, will be used towards a pilot project focusing on young women within the BME communities in South Shields, aged 13 to 18, to raise awareness and tackle issues such as domestic abuse, hate crime, internet grooming and radicalisation.

Ms Baird added: “I am delighted to award funding to this very worthy group. I’m passionate about working with our diverse communities and want to increase confidence amongst those in the minority to come forward to police or support agencies and seek help about issues they may face.

“I’m confident the money will go a long way to making this pilot project a success.”