In September 2017, Big Hearts launched the T.E.A.M Project in partnership with the Edinburgh based charity Multi-Cultural Family Base.
T.E.A.M – for Together Equality Achieves More – aims to improve the emotional wellbeing and increase social connections of young people identified as vulnerable or isolated.
Establishing a new area of focus for Big Hearts, the programme aims to offer opportunities for young people attending the local schools to reduce their social isolation and build a community where all cultures and backgrounds thrive together.
To date 18 children aged 9 to 13 are taking part in a set of after school activities every Thursday at Tynecastle Park – including arts & crafts workshops and football games followed by a healthy snack.
In addition, Big Hearts is working with the Grassroots Football Development Department of the Club to secure free places at the community football courses during school holidays. Since the summer 2017, the football courses welcomed 50 children from a wide range of backgrounds, including 30 Syrian young people referred by the Edinburgh Council’s Syrian Resettlement Programme.
Multi-Cultural Family Base, Big Hearts’ lead partner for the T.E.A.M Project, brings their expertise in reaching out to various local communities and works closely with the primary and secondary schools across Edinburgh to identify children who could benefit from attending the group.
Rosie Megginson from Multi-Cultural Family Base said: “Some of the children who attend the Big Hearts and MCFB partnership T.E.A.M project represent the diversity across the Gorgie and Dalry area. These children attend local primary and secondary schools and the project helps them to build friendships and skills to reduce isolation and help them to become more a part of their local community. Football is a universal language, and in playing football these children have been able to learn team building skills, overcome language barriers and grow their confidence, as well as making genuine friendships and connections within the local community.“