12–18 November 2018

Empowering people to take part

21 Jun 2016

The Nishkam Centre

Professor Upkar S. Pardesi

“I organised a series of events during Parliament Week 2015, beginning at Nishkam Primary School aimed specifically at young people and included a quiz on democracy to test the children’s awareness of political parties and the role of local councils and parliament. Two local Councillors took part in this event to inspire youngsters with their role and journey into politics and encouraged children to further explore the democratic processes at local and national levels.

The Nishkam Centre also hosted a Parliament Week event to raise the awareness amongst young children, students and adults from the Sikh community in Birmingham. The aim was to get people to engage with the democratic processes at local, national and European level whilst identifying the barriers holding them back. Hendrina Quinnen, Councillor for Lozells and East Handsworth Ward gave an account on her background and why she became a councillor and spoke very passionately about engaging with the local community.

Children at Nishkam Primary School

The Week provided a motive and an incentive for NCA to mobilise volunteers to actively organise events for young children, young people and adults from the Sikh community specifically to raise awareness of the importance of the democratic processes in UK and for the Sikh community to become more active in local and national political representation.

The Nishkam Centre


I would definitely encourage every other local, civic, voluntary and community organisation in the UK to have a go at organising an event, even if you start small, to help your local community to gain a better understanding of the democratic processes in the UK. We must encourage all communities to make sure that they are actively engaged in the political process and represent their interests.”

Prof. Upkar S. Pardesi, OBE, PhD, FCIM, Business School Director, The Nishkam Centre