Luton, Bedfordshire

Projects across Luton

Subscribe

Stay updated

Our vision

A society where everyone knows a sense of belonging, has the sustenance they need, and can fulfil their aspirations.

Our mission

To promote social inclusion by relieving hardship, developing skills, facilitating social opportunities, and tackling stigma.

Our aims

1

Relieve hardship

We’ll provide practical support to people facing hardship. Working with beneficiaries and local services to inform our projects, we’ll coordinate community giving to provide people with items to help meet their needs.

2

Develop skills

We’ll increase access to education and training opportunities. To build confidence and support long-term inclusion, we’ll deliver free and subsidised training and education in soft skills and accredited courses.

3

Facilitate social opportunities

We’ll create and increase access to social opportunities. Taking into consideration the needs of our beneficiaries, we’ll coordinate inclusive and accessible activities and events for people who face stigma, financial difficulty or other barriers.

4

Tackle stigma

We’ll raise awareness of the experiences of the people we work with. To promote more acceptance of and engagement with groups who are socially excluded, we’ll coordinate projects to tackle stigma and discrimination.

Our Principles

Participation

We involve beneficiaries in developing and delivering our projects. This helps inform our work and facilitate leadership roles for the people we work with.

Inclusion

We always make efforts to be mindful of the different parts of people’s identity and the different factors that make up their experiences. Our projects take into account an individual’s context and needs.

Partnership

We value working with different organisations and services including grassroots groups who know their communities best. We believe in working together to achieve mutual aims.

Our team

Our Trustees

Melissa Llewellyn

I'm one of the founding trustees of the charity, which is named in memory of my mum who passed away in 2017. I've run community projects and worked for charities in mostly interfaith-based roles for almost ten years, including for churches, and in child poverty and safeguarding charities.

My day-to-day role involves developing training relating to safeguarding with a focus on identity, prejudice and structural challenges in order to build resilience in faith communities against different forms of harm. The first two years of The Courtney Foundation have been really exciting and I'm looking ahead to a new chapter of more sustainable projects and broader areas of work.

Sadiqul Choudhury

I've worked in the voluntary & charity sector for 11 years. My main areas of expertise are working on Education and Skills Funding Agency & European Social Fund projects, successfully moving learners onto better destinations such as employment. I founded a community organisation, Community Needs, with 22 other young people at 19. We raised thousands of pounds for charities and delivered over 100 social action projects in our first three years.

I've worked with charities that specialise in poverty, homelessness, young people & education, and have extensive experience in managing a wide range of projects from festivals to summer programmes. I'm looking forward to The Courtney Foundation providing more support to people struggling with financial & emotional difficulties, projects that respond to the cost of living crisis, and youth work.

Hamza Parker

I've worked for a local Muslim charity for the last 8 years as a centre manager, providing information about Islam and supporting people in their personal religious journeys. This also involves supporting some of the most vulnerable and marginalised people in Luton and connecting them to other organisations and charities for different types of support. 

As a football coach I work with primary and secondary age boys on weekends and facilitate sports sessions for local schools and charities throughout the year.  I've been involved in The Courtney Foundation's core project Luton Clothing Bank since it began and I'm looking forward to developing this and new, specifically youth-focused projects in my new trustee role.

Ahmed Adde

It's been inspiring developing The Courtney Foundation from an idea to a charity helping thousands of people directly and indirectly over the first few years. I've previously delivered charitable work in management and frontline roles, addressing multiple needs including supporting families who face barriers to accessing services, and young people through mentoring and tutoring. 

With a background in aviation and experience working abroad, I'm looking forward to working with local people who may feel limited in their opportunities and supporting them in finding their own routes to success.

Annual Reports and Accounts

Our views

The messages below shine light on who we are and where we stand. They reflect what’s important to us and how we work. We know that statements aren’t substitutes for actual experiences and behaviour, but we think it’s important to share our views on important matters.

Blackness isn’t momentary.

There are several other awareness campaigns running this October alongside Black History Month. They exist to bring awareness to a cause that is usually under the radar in society and often has a stigma attached to it. Black History Month speaks to how poorly we include Blackness not only in our education systems, but in the rest of our society’s framework too. If we have any knowledge of history, we can admit this is a result of more than wilful ignorance.

World Mental Health Day will always be relevant in a society that stigmatises mental illness and frames good mental health as the acceptable norm. This informs the standard at which we are expected to function, and thrive, at school, at work or in our communities. Black History Month will always be relevant when a society’s standards are based on Whiteness. Are we ready to enter an honest dialogue about what this means and how this impacts people’s lives? Then we can move towards reshaping the structures and redefining the norms that perpetuate it.

Peace doesn’t mean passivity. Peace doesn’t mean inaction, ‘colour blindness’, or listening only to the voices that don’t make us too uncomfortable. Peace takes work. It requires ongoing acknowledgement of current and historic injustices and constant individual and collective effort to right wrongs.

It’s a journey with lots of approaches. It means unpacking issues on an individual level, with your family and in your community and changing what’s acceptable. It means structural changes through policy and legislation. It means fixing media representation in news and entertainment and their portrayal of communities and the issues that affect them. It will take all of this much and more. Where is your power? What privileges do you hold and how can you utilize them? 

But in identifying your power, understand the power of vulnerability. We must be able to acknowledge the harmful ideas we hold, and realise that understanding what we don’t know is as important as telling people what we do know.

It doesn’t begin or end on social media.