Cultúr Migrants Centre - M.O.R.E. Project
17 September 2015
Cultúr Migrants Centre - M.O.R.E. Project - |European Integration Fund (EIF)

Cultúr is a community work organisation working with ethnic minorities including immigrants, migrant workers, asylum seekers and refugees, across County Meath. The organisations vision is an equal and intercultural County Meath where ethnic minorities and their families are included and respected.  The organisation aims to promote the empowerment, participation, self-determination and rights of ethnic minorities who experience or are at risk of poverty, social exclusion and racism. The core principles and values of the organisation are:
- A commitment to working towards an anti-racist and intercultural society.
- A focus on an equality framework which is anti-racist, anti-sexist, with a class analysis and promotes the social inclusion of ethnic minorities.
- An emphasis on a community work approach to our work.
- A commitment to the empowerment and participation of ethnic minorities.
- A capacity and willingness to working in solidarity with others seeking to promote the rights of ethnic minorities through a shared vision and ethos.

About the Project
THE M.O.R.E. project, funded under the European Integration Fund (ERF), address two of the major issues of concern for Third Country Nationals (TCN) in County Meath namely, workplace exploitation and racism, through a number of specific actions

The project provided dedicated outreach and predevelopment work by two community workers with TCN women who are employed in the hotel/cleaning, agrifood or care work industries. Through the pilot project, women working in these industries were identified as at particular risk of workplace exploitation. The outreach work, done in conjunction with SIPTU, provided workshops on workplace rights and entitlements. Using a community development approach, the women were also encouraged and supported to become involved in action groups for their particular industry.  Because many migrant women are in employment which is very much below their standard of education and prior experience, community workers supported and encourage them to link in with some of the career development services that were available in their local area.

The project also engaged with a number of men who were at particular risk of exploitation in the red meat industry. The men were encouraged to develop an action group in conjunction with SIPTU.
While a model of working in partnership between community organisations and trade unions has been developed on a national level, the M.O.R.E project focused on the development of a model of working together at a local level.

The Racism project include a drama illustrating the findings of Cultur’s research on racism in County Meath which was written and performed by black migrants. Information was also provided across the county on racist reporting mechanisms and legal protections against racist attacks.

Pobal’s Role:
• Considered and recommended application for funding
• Held support and information events
• Proving ongoing advice on reporting criteria

Project Outputs
The project made significant progress against its targets in 2014, with 60 women and 20 men engaged through outreach action. The overall engagement with the target group has exceeded 117 migrants.
The project held 13 information workshops which exceeds the target of eight information workshops set in the grant agreement. The drama element of the project, which focused on racism, was developed and performed in four centres across Meath. A DVD of the drama was recorded and played for a number of schools in the locality.
One of the aims of the project was to develop three action groups for three industries with leadership training by SIPTU. One of the challenges the project workers encountered was a low attendance by TCN workers at the Agrifood Action Group due to their fear that any participation in a group forum could put their jobs at risk. The learning from this project has been to allocate more time on pre-development and developing participants' confidence.
I feel more equipped to better understand the rights I’m entitled to in the workplace having taken part in the workshops. The information was clear, concise and accessible. Project participant. 
Project Outcomes
• Increased access to information on workplace rights and entitlements for TCN women.
• Increased numbers of TCN women who join trade unions
• Increased numbers of TCN women who are active members of trade unions.
• Increased numbers of TCN women who are in leadership roles within trade unions.
• Increased support for TCN women to access employment opportunities relevant to their prior training and experience. 
• Increased TCN access to information about reporting of racist incidents
• Increased awareness of the issue of racism among people living in County Meath.
• Increased awareness among service providers and Gardai about the levels of racism experienced by migrants in county Meath.