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WEDHS (Oct 2007)

Diversity Awards Wales 10/07

WEDHS receiving their presentation

THE South East Wales branch of the Wales Equality and Diversity in Health and Social Care Research and Support Service (WEDHS) has been recognised in a national awards ceremony celebrating achievements in race equality.

George Karani, a Professor of Environmental Health at the University of Wales Institute, Cardiff (UWIC), chairs the South East Wales branch of WEDHS who were awarded the Education Body Award at the Diversity Awards Wales ceremony, held at the Senedd buildings in Cardiff Bay.

The Diversity Awards were set up to celebrate the achievements of organisations and individuals who strive to promote best practice in the field of race diversity, equality and social justice in Wales.

The South East Wales branch of WEDHS is a joint collaboration between UWIC and the Universities of Swansea, Glamorgan, and Keele, as well as the North Wales Race Equality Council.

The WEDHS is made up of a group of academics, community development activists and researchers who are committed to carrying out, and supporting, high quality research on key health and social care issues facing black and ethnic minority groups in Wales.

Professor Karani, who is originally from Kenya and has worked as consultant to the World Health Organisation and the World Bank, said that he and the rest of the WEDHS team were pleasantly surprised to win the award.

"It was fantastic to get this recognition for the work universities are carrying out across Wales in this field," he said.

"Too often, university research is considered alien to what actually goes on in the day-to-day lives of people in the community, but through this initiative we have taken what we know out in to these communities and have improved people's quality of life.

"A recent project saw four community groups in the South East Wales area given £500 to put on an information event in their community relating to Health and Social Care - the simplicity of the project made it hugely successful with the groups involved.

"This award is testament to the hard work and contribution of everyone involved in WEDHS, and hopefully we will continue to drive forward improvement of health and social issues in these communities."

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