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Research Findings
December 2004
Chinese Action Research Project:
household needs, public services and community

During the late 1980s and early 1990’s all Chinese community organisations in Leeds became united in their efforts to identify their own community needs, establish their concerns on local political and policy agendas and secure resources for community based activities and service provision. This activity was supported by the collection of relevant research data drawing on fieldwork with Chinese households and businesses. The subsequent report and recommendations made a strong case for urgent action (Law 1990) This report is included here as Appendix 3 for future reference and because many outstanding issues and recommendations remain pertinent. As a result of this activity a variety of new initiatives and organisations developed including the establishment of Leeds Chinese Community Association (LCCA) and the establishment of the Chinese Community Centre on North Street with the assistance of Urban Programme funding. For further information on LCCA see Appendix 4.

This report and its associated programme of work was commissioned by Chinese community groups based on a continuing recognition that community needs were not being adequately met, community organisations needed greater support and that key issues affecting the local Chinese community were often given little institutional attention. This report can also be seen as a follow-up to the local study carried out in 1990. This project was funded by a Health Action Zone grant and by Leeds City Council’s Equal Opportunities Unit and Social Services Department and was carried out by Dr. Ian Law in conjunction with Chinese community groups in Leeds.

This project was conceived as an action research initiative, which means that community based skills development, empowering community organisations and building collective agendas and initiatives have gone hand in hand with more normal research methods techniques in collecting data and identifying various forms of need. Lai Fong Chiu’s doctoral work on health education and Chinese women in Leeds is a model example of effectively implemented action research in this field (Chiu 2003).

The project began in March 2004 and was managed by a steering group including representatives of Chinese community organisations who initially identified a core set of community concerns. A team of ten Chinese women were trained in fieldwork techniques and they carried out a survey of 110 adults. Each member of the team also provided a personal report of their experiences of doing this fieldwork together with their own observations on the issues addressed, which are included in an edited form in this report. The questionnaire was designed and data analysis carried out used Compass Software which is available from the Policy Research Unit, Leeds Metropolitan University. This is very easy to use and is designed for community groups to carry out their own needs assessment studies. Also focus groups were carried out with representatives of Chinese organisations and at Leeds Chinese Community School, additional material was drawn from interviews with some members of the Chinese community. Firstly, a summary of key findings and recommendations is given.

(To Be Continued)

  Full Report Download Here.  

LCCA 2007/2008

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