I am Veronica E Barnes, Chairperson of the Blue Mountain Women Group, I worked in the community for a number of years and I was fortunate to be associated with the Association of Caribbean Families and Friends. Being aware of the ground-breaking work the Association of Caribbean Families and Friends Education and Cultural Centre delivered in Nottingham from 1979 – 2003, at the closure of the said centre some documents and items left at the Centre was saved from destruction by members of the Blue Mountain Women Group. I was pleased and excited when I was asked by the Founding father of ACFF Mr. Eric Irons to become a member of the association, and later as founder and Chair of Blue Mountain Women Group, he asked if our group would be willing to become custodians of the resource left in the Centre.
In Nottingham over the years since migration of the Windrush generation various community groups, projects and organisations folded leaving little or no record of the development and work carried out by people from the African Caribbean Community I feel it is very important that the History of the African Caribbean people be preserved for future generations to learn from this collection, the contributions made by their parent’s grandparents and great- grand parents. The collection is invaluable and will enable the younger generation to educate themselves, build self – esteem empower this generation and the generation to come to feel valued. As Marcus Mosiah Garvey states “A people without knowledge of their past history origins and culture is like a tree without roots” This quote is imperative to continued work that needs to be done in relation to the African Caribbean people here in Nottingham and the Global family of African people.
I will draw upon this quote throughout this report as it is so pertinent to what is happening to Black people at this present time in our societies. So with this in mind the Blue Mountain Women Group looked for ways in preserving this collection hence the next steps were taken to archive the collection through the Nottinghamshire Archive.
Please find the HLF Report below: