Interviewer: Kevin Philemon
Interview: 11: 33
KEVIN: Ok, let’s start.
FRIEDA: Do you need any hands? (Laughter).
KEVIN: Ok. (Laughter)
FRIEDA: I’m thinking of moral support you need.
KEVIN: (Laughter) Ok, ok, ok. So, ok.
FRIEDA: Be quite please.
KEVIN: Ok, then. When you’re ready.
FRIEDA: OK. Um, name is Frieda Malik and err I was born in Pakistan and came to England in 1969 and always in Bristol.
KEVIN: Ok, can you tell me about your childhood um, experience in Pakistan and when you came to Bristol what was the difference?
KEVIN: You can start with my child, as a child growing up in Pakistan…
FRIEDA: As a child growing up in Pakistan be to very honest I don’t remember a great deal obviously, I wasn’t that young but I still don’t have a lot of memoires of when I was in Pakistan . Coming to England, Bristol, all I remember it being very cold and very dark, um, we weren’t that happy the children of the family wasn’t happy coming um, but when we started school it gradually got better and we started enjoying ourselves.
KEVIN: Were there any cultural differences you observed um, from school in Pakistan, and school, coming to England, cultural or even ah, any kind of ah, racial experience, your experience?
FRIEDA: Culture difference I think for me the striking thing was my clothes because obviously as a Muslim we cover, err, we wore trousers and err, what we called the, the clothes that I came in was Shukrmease, not the conventional trousers and top that we wear here so I found that quite difficult to get used to. Um, racially I know, I, I settled in really well, I haven’t made good friends and I didn’t feel any, no, I didn’t feel anything that I was picked on in any aspects to be honest with you. Yes, I couldn’t speak the language but I, my memories aren’t negative about that at all.
KEVIN: Ok, alright. Can you tell me about um, your invol, can you tell me about your involvement in community work, um, this is before we are talking about KHAAS, um, that you’ve done in the past that you remember? You haven’t, ok. Ok, let’s go straight into it then. Can you tell me um, how long you’ve been working with KHAAS and um, your role to start with?
FRIEDA: Um, um. I’ve been working for KHASS now for the last 12 years. I started as play worker, then I did some work in the office as admin, finance worker and now I’m the coordinator and I have been the coordinator as job share as the coordinator for the last 2 years.
KEVIN: What does the role of the coordinator, what does that involve?
FRIEDA: I don’t know, I don’t know?
FRIEDA: I don’t know? (Laughter).
KEVIN: Don’t worry about that one, don’t worry.
FRIEDA: No, no, no, I’ll tell you. Yeah I’ve got it all here,
KEVIV: Ok, ok.
FRIEDA: I just thought…
KEVIN: It that the question I just asked, yeah?
FRIEDA: Right, as a coordinator um, I’m sort of mainly responsible for, because we a voluntary sector and it all depends on funding so we have to apply for funding, ensure it’s spent accordingly, organise and supervise staff, do the monitoring reports and feedback everything to the management committee because as a voluntary sector the whole organisation is run by management committee. Um, so and, and everybody, ensure that everyone adheres to the policies and procedures of the organisation. And mainly our activates are the Sagittarius bike care that we as, as a play scheme for the disabled children and their siblings, young carers, young female carers group err, that’s mainly the siblings of the disabled children that meet every Saturday. Um, what else do we do? We organise trips and outings and residential’s for the carers as well, maybe once or twice a year. Um, what else can I say? (Laughter).
KEVIN: Ok. Tell me, can you tell me a little bit KHAAS as a organisation, what you do as a organisation?
FRIEDA: W hat we do? Shall I tell you the aim of KHAAS first?
KEVIN: Yeah, yeah.
FRIEDA: Right. The overall aim of KHAAS is, is a project that we aim to campaign and promote the needs of disabled children and young people, South Asian disabled and young people. And the project empowers and enables children with disabilities and their carers to have access to relevant and appropriately designed and community based resources, to improve their quality of life, that’s our overall aim. Um, but the objectives, there are few objectives, that’s to bring together carers of disabled and special needs children for mutual support in order to avoid isolation and ease the pressures of caring. To provide advice and information on a wide range of issues relating to health, social and welfare services, respite and transport. To provide a safe and stimulating environment in which children with special needs and their siblings can play thus encouraging them to develop their physical, intellectual emotional language and social skills and to encourage parents to develop their own activities and programmes whereby they organise cultural events and social activities. These are our main objectives.
KEVIN: Ok. Can you tell me how long KHAAS has been going for and when it was um, set up and stuff, a little bit of history of KHAAS?
FRIEDA: Oh, my god. Oh, my god, I’ve got it written here.
KEVIN: It’s alright, take your time.
FRIEDA: No, it’s here. What did you say? That tells it that we were, yeah. KHAAS err, initially was brought about by I think in 1987, we celebrating our silver anniversary, 25 years this year. What else? What else?
KEVIN: UM, original…
FRIEDA: Shall I tell you why it came about?
KEVIN: Yeah, yeah. That’s all, yeah, yeah, sorry.
KEVIN: You can just start…
KEVIN: That it came about because…
FRIEDA: Yeah. KHAAS came about initially because there was a huge gap in provision, um; Bristol City Council, Social Services and the Education Department, Bristol Day Care Review of 1996 showed gaps in current provision including shortage of family based respite care, support for Asian children with disabilities and access to specialist and culturally appropriately toys and equipment. Through our on going outreach work KHAAS has discovered and registered many Asian families needing support in relation to the disadvantage children and young people. KHAAS has approximately 60 families on its register that are currently receiving support from the project. Our experience over the 20, the past 25 years has shown those services are not available and assessable through the mainstream provision currently offered by Bristol City Council, Social Services and the Education Department. KHAAS hands is unique and the only organisation, organisation in Bristol for Asian families who have children with disabilities.
KEVIN: Ok, thank you. Um, I wanna, (laughter), I wanna to go into um, your opinion…
FRIEDA: My nature opinion, No (laughter).
KEVIN: (Laughter) don’t worry (laughter). It’s not easy to be interviewed.
FRIEDA: It’s horrible isn’t it. Err, it’s terrible.
KEVIN: It’s not easy. Ok. I want you to tell me your opinion, what you think of BME organisations in general and how useful you think they are?
FRIEDA: A good question, we’ve done about that.
FRIEDA: There’s only, to be honest with you. Ok, go on. Right BME organisations in general fulfil a very important role and there is a gap in provision um, for culturally sensitive provision.
KEVIN: Ok, and um, what do you see as the future of the BME sector with all these funding cuts and all that, that’s taking place?
FRIEDA: Very uncertain.
KEVIN: Can you with, I see the future…
FRIEDA: To me the future for the BME services seem very bleak and very uncertain. Um, even KHAAS we’ve been going around, we’ve been going for about 25 years. We just don’t know if were going to have funding next year. So it seems quite uncertain at the moment but hopefully, um, it all depends on the economy, even the economy picks up hopefully were have more funding.
KEVIN: Ok. 2 more questions. Um, the first one is um, what do you, how do you, how would you define heritage?
FRIEDA: Oh, talking about that…
KEVIN: Yeah, yeah.
FRIEDA: Is so difficult.
KEVIN: Yeah, yeah. Ok, if you have to. You ready?
FRIEDA: Um, hold on. How would you define heritage? (Laughter and chatter). Um…
FRIEDA: Ok then, go on then.
FRIEDA: To me heritage is who I am and where I come from. Um, I’ve, I’ve lived in this country for a very long time and I feel that we have the best of both worlds and um, to a certain degree I have adapted err, to my surroundings. But yes, feel privileged that I’ve got the best of both worlds. Thank you Sasdaq. (Laughter).
FRIEDA: Um, what else can we say about heritage?
KEVIN: That’s fine.
FRIEDA: Is that ok?
KEVIN: That’s fine, yeah, yeah. Ok the final question is um, how to you think your own personal heritage has influence um, the area you live especially working for KHAAS? How do you feel your own personal heritage has, has influenced your community? You understand that?
FRIEDA: Hold on, hold on. How do we adapt to the country…
FRIEDA: And understand.
KEVIN: It’s, it’s…
FRIEDA: Being on wall
KEVIN: It’s what you brought in, you, your personal heritage into the community. It’s, your, your own because your heritage is what you acquire isn’t it from being brought up in a particular culture and you give it out again for free to people. That’s your heritage…
KEVIN: You’re free to share it. How do you feel your personal heritage has influenced the community that you work with and the, you know, KHAAS, you have been working for KHAAS for a while so, you know, how do you feel, what have you done within your personal heritage that, that has it influenced it?
FRIEDA: It’s hard isn’t it?
KEVIN: Its not you know.
FRIEDA: No, its not?
KEVIN: No. Just see. Let, let me pause it.
KEVIN: I would say something. Yeah, you’re do well…Ok; start with my own personal heritage has…
FRIEDA: Right, my own personal heritage, sorry what was I going (laughter), sorry what was I to say again?
KEVIN: Start again, start again. It’s alright, it’s alright.
FRIEDA: So what, so what…So how’s it going to start again sorry? Say it again.
KEVIN: My own personal…
FRIEDA: Heritage, yeah.
KEVIN: Has um, has influenced my community…
FRIEDA: Ok, has influenced my community.
KEVIN: Start again.
FRIEDA: Ok, my own personal heritage has influenced um, my community and I brought certain skills um, and values to this organisation, um, and um amongst us the staff, the core staff, we speak several different languages and most of the service users in KHAAS are unable to read and write English and their own language. So we communicate with everything in yeah, sort of verbally and I feel that’s a great skill that, that’s lacking in lots of other organisations but we are able to communicate with our users because we can communicate in several languages um…
KEVIN: Can you tell, tell me about the languages in question please. Talk about the languages …
FRIEDA: Yeah, the languages that we speak are Urdu, Panjabi, Hindi, Coushatta, Bangladeshi, so there’s lots of languages and we cater for South Asian families and these are the languages that are used, yeah, community languages. I can’t think of anything to say?
KEVIN: That’s ok, that’s ok.
FRIEDA: Maybe you can do this bit?
KEVIN: That’s ok, that’s fine, I’ve got…
FRIEDA: You’re sure?
KEVIN: I’ve got enough now.
FRIEDA: That’s finished.