England & Wales

The Positive Side of Prevent: Bringing Communities together: Youth Radicalisation & Alienation



There is growing concern over the alienation and radicalisation of many young people within our communities in the UK.  The Prevent Strategy has been an important element in engaging local authorities, educational institutions and the voluntary sector in confronting this concern.

However, much attention has been directed at the “reporting” side of the Prevent Strategy and less on the development of cross-cultural links and the importance of dialogue and conversations.  And yet this is probably the most important aspect of the strategy overall.

This workshop will focus on how we work together to develop community conversations across communities to develop a sense of cohesion that can be owned by all.  It will look at some case studies of good practice, look at the role of social networking and the new media and provide space for us to discuss our own experiences.

Participants of this workshop will gain:

  • An understanding of the Prevent Strategy and its objective of cross cultural conversations.
  • The role of the local authority, educational institutions and the voluntary sector
  • An understanding the importance of brokerage
  • The value of interfaith dialogue
  • Deciding what can be done online and through social networking
  • The role of digital stories and social reporting
  • Timely feedback and next steps


The programme*

The morning session will explore the idea of community conversations as an essential part of the Prevent strategy and look at some case studies of good practice. The afternoon session will look at interfaith work, the importance of working with Educational organisations and the added value that social networking and the New Media can bring to making connections and engaging new audiences of people.


Community Engagement, Targeting & Conversations
09.30 Coffee and Registration

10.00 Introduction to day and overview (Francis Sealey, GlobalNet21)

10.15 Google Interview of Fiyaz Mughal (Faith Matters)

10.25 “The Prevent Strategy: implementation, impact, and dialogue.” (Fahid Qurashi, – Canterbury Christ Church University)

10.45 Questions and discussion

11.00 Working With Communities Overview (Francis Sealey)

11.05 Case Study 1 – Walthamstow Case Study. Working With Schools.(Sean Thompson)

11.25 Case Study 2 – Working with Communities & Young People (Raheed Salam)

11.45 Case Study 3 – The Somali Community (Abdigani Yussuf of Horn Peace International)

12.05 Questions To Presenters of Case Studies

12.25 Lunch

13.00 Overview of the afternoon session (Francis Sealey and Rayla Javaid)

13.15 – Developing Community Conversations (Google Interview – Viv Grant of Integrity Coaching)

13.25 – Working Across Faiths – Inter Faith Dialogue (Fuad Nahdi – Radical Middle Way)

13.50 Questions

14.05 The Central Role of the Local Authority In Creating Dialogue & Understanding (Francis Sealey)

14.15 Case Study – Steve Milton ( Google Interview) Wiltshire County Council

14.25 Developing Social Networks to engage people from different communities – The Use of Digital Stories (Francis Sealey)

14.40 Questions

14.50 – Sub Group Discussions on Developing An Engagement Strategy

15.25 Feedback from Sub Groups

15.40 – Conclusion and Rushanara Ali Video On Importance of Conversations

15.45 – Feedback on the Day

16.00 – Close


* This programme was correct at the time of publication but may be altered to reflect speaker changes that are beyond our control. 

Workshop facilitators: Francis Sealey, GlobalNet21, a former producer at the BBC for The Open University, Francis has extensive experience of engaging with local communities and the use of social media. Rayla Javaid Fahid Qurashi joined Canterbury Christ Church University in 2014 as a Lecturer in Criminology. He completed a Ph.D. in Sociology at the University of Kent. Prior to this he was awarded a M.Sc. Criminology and Criminal Justice (Research Methods) from the University of Oxford, and a B.Sc. (Hons) Criminology and Forensic Science from the University of Northumbria. His research critically analysed the political and religious dimensions of British Muslim radicalism and its state management through a range of counter-terrorism and criminal justice policy and legislation. The research was based on nine months of ethnographic research across three research sites, guided by a participatory approach, and supplemented with ethnographic interviews and focus groups. Fiyaz Mughal OBE is director of Faith Matters, an interfaith and anti-extremist organisation which runs the TELL MAMA anti-Muslim violence helpline. Fiyaz was appointed on the Working Group for Communities that was linked to the Extremism Task Force developed in 2005 after the 7/7 bombings. In early 2008, Fiyaz was successful in becoming an elected member IDeA Peer Mentor for national work with local authorities on the Preventing Violent Extremism agenda. Fiyaz was honoured in June 2009 by Her Majesty the Queen and was bestowed with the Honour of the Order of the British Empire. Abdigani Yussuf is an Impact Assessment practitioner with an experience of evaluating how a particular service could impact on people’s health and wellbeing. He has recently completed a study about prevention of radicalisation among Somali youth in London. He has also setup a community organisation called Horn Peace which engages with young people of horn of African origin (including Somali, Ethiopian, Eritrean, Djibouti and Sudan) about the issues of radicalisation. For many years, he worked in community projects covering health promotion, community engagement/ development and drug education, in both specialist and generic services. Rasheed Salem is a former microbiologist and Business Development Manager in the Pharmaceutical industry Raheed is now a consultant in faith communities with a specialism with Young Muslim people. A practitioner of equality and diversity and a facilitator of values based understanding and identity of plural Universal Human and Faith values. Working on strategies and practical steps to engaging and empowering young Muslims and speaking to many stakeholders including Muslim Community organisations, Central and local government and other faith communities. Rayla Javaid is a Solicitor employed by the Royal Courts of Justice Advice Bureau who provide legal advice and assistance to Litigants in Persons (LIPs). The Charity has been set up to assist those that cannot afford to obtain legal advice. She is especially interested in protecting people's rights to freedom and by extension this has led her to explore the rise of Islamaphobia both here in the UK and Europe. Viv Grant has been in the teaching profession for over 25 years. Seventeen years ago, she was one of the youngest head teachers in the country to turn around a failing school. Viv has been a consultant for the Department for Education, a lead tutor on Leadership development programmes at the London Centre for Leadership in Learning at the Institute of Education, University of London, the National College and the NUT. Viv’s interests have been on diversity, leadership and engagement and has been very much involved in connecte3d community conversations. Fuad Nahdi is the Executive Director of the Radical Middle Way and Founding Editor of the pioneering Q-News – The Muslim Magazine which he founded in 1992. His contributions in fields of media, community activism and interfaith work spanning over three decades has been widely recognised in the UK and across the Muslim world. He has championed the vitally important role faith communities play in creating a just, tolerant and productive society and has worked with particular vigour to foster a strong sense of British identity amongst the United Kingdom’s diverse Muslim communities. - See more at: http://www.radicalmiddleway.org/speaker/fuad-nahdi#sthash.ZBNY5KS8.dpuf Sean Thomson is the Citizenship and Cohesion Advisor for Waltham Forest, and brings to the role a wealth of teaching experience at a number of different levels across the education sector. Sean’s own mixed background and inner-city education have also offered him first-hand insight into the complex issues that young people have to tackle when finding their place in modern UK society, and the impact that alienation and isolation can have on the communities that they belong to. By planning and delivering formal lessons and selective workshops, and organising various guest speakers to visit schools across Waltham Forest, Sean has sought to engage and educate as many members of the community as possible and provide them with the safe space to discuss and develop their views. Steve Milton is Head of Communities: Engagement and Governance at Wiltshire Council. In Wiltshire, they have been trying to develop a way of linking up assets and spreading good ideas across the County. When they talk about assets, they mean those community 'connectors,' volunteers, community led projects, open resources and physical things. They have developed the tools of using digital stories to give a voice to people often unheard and to to connect communities and influence decision makers.
Who should attend?
This workshop provides a meeting point for leading stakeholder and community engagement leaders and professionals, sharing knowledge, tools and strategies to achieve success in creating mutually beneficial outcomes for both themselves, their stakeholders and the communities in which they operate. It will be of value to those working in local authorities, colleges and the voluntary sector and who are engaged in building bridges across communities.