The WMCA and Community Cohesion
The WMCA (West Midlands Combined Authority) is a collection of West Midlands councils, working together on region-wide issues that span across different sectors. These councils include Birmingham, Coventry, Sandwell, Dudley, Solihull, Walsall and Wolverhampton. The WMCA is chaired by the Mayor of the West Midlands, Andy Street CBE. Community cohesion refers to the building of relationships between different communities, with a focus on mutual respect and harmony. Successful community cohesion is often measured by the manner in which these different communities positively interact with each other.
Miss Macaroon, the WMCA, and the wider community
Miss Macaroon’s status as one of the West Midlands’ premier Social Enterprises ensured an invite to the WMCA meeting. The organisation’s MacsMAD (Macaroons that Make a Difference) scheme incorporates the values of inclusivity and cross-community work laid out by Andy Street, with:
- 42% of trainees self-reporting as Black, Asian and Minority Ethnic.
- 19% of trainees self reporting as Ex-Offenders.
- 19% of trainees self-reporting learning difficulties.
- 38% of trainees self-reporting Autism Spectrum Disorder.
- Full details available here
100% of profits from selling macaroons at Miss Macaroon are redirected into programmes – such as the MacsMAD scheme – targeted at providing skills and opportunities to help young people, across different communities, get into the world of work.
The WMCA Community Cohesion virtual roundtable
After an introduction from Andy Street CBE, Anna Yim – CEO of Birmingham’s Chinese Community Centre – led a presentation focusing on the efforts made by the Chinese Community during the pandemic. This included the creation of flu-jab videos, bake sales and the delivering of food parcels to the vulnerable. This continued with talks detailing the role of Community Cohesion in combating hate crimes, to talks observing the segregation within housing and schooling in different parts of the West Midlands.
One segment, led by Dr James Reese, focused upon the Social Economy – a realm Miss Macaroon operates within. The talk explored the challenges faced by organisations such as Miss Macaroon throughout the pandemic.
For more information on the role Miss Macaroon plays within the local community, click here