We care about people and places and express this in long-term commitment to our priority neighbourhoods – all within a few miles of each other in North East Birmingham.
This is where it all began back in 2003. Perry Common and the surrounding area once had the highest juvenile crime rate across Birmingham. Through prayer, partnership and positive relationships UDB have played our part in turning this around but there is still so much to do. Our base here is Hope House and we run various activities from The Underground, part of St Martin’s Church.
Just up from the road from Perry Common lies a collection of neighbourhoods surrounding Short Heath Park. New builds, mingle with beautiful period properties, a 20th century sink estate and post-war high rises. Pockets of this area are in the poorest 1% across the entire nation but there is a vibrant and unmistakable sense of community. We run street-based activities on the Topcroft estate and support the work of St Margaret’s Church over on Jarvis Road.
Over towards Spaghetti Junction lies the Erdington Hall estate. With rising youth crime levels and high rates of unemployment we were invited to launch a youth project there in 2009 and centred our project around St Chad’s Church. We have seen significant change and have getting to know an increasingly diverse community of people.
Wyrley Birch is a small estate of 800 or so homes situated next to the beautiful Witton Lakes. Services and resources have been gradually removed from the neighbourhood over the past 20 years and it is one of the most statistically disadvantaged places to live in the UK. Working with local people and other organisations we are beginning to see things shift. We run activities at the Lakeside Childrens Centre and Orchard Tea Rooms.