Middlesex University plays a crucial role in Barnet, one of London’s most diverse boroughs. From students volunteering for local causes, its community events like the STEM and Literary Festivals, and the University’s work to raise attainment and aspiration in local schools, it is clear that Middlesex lives and breathes diversity. We are delighted to see the University is now harnessing diversity as a strength through shaping new and innovative ways of learning, creating a vibrant student experience and working within our community to show how diversity can make a difference to local people and businesses.
Richard Cornelius, Leader, London Borough of Barnet
As part of our mission to engage with the wider community, we’re proud that our students are helping to improve local lives
Every first Saturday of the month, student volunteers gather together to welcome local underprivileged people onto the campus for a few hours of respite from their worries. Established by the Middlesex Students’ Union in 2016, the MDX Home Community Kitchen serves up hot meals and provides a friendly space for homeless people and those on low incomes to relax in. Volunteer nursing students and doctors are on hand to provide medical aid, alongside mental health nurses and psychologists. Our Law students help advise on legal matters and assist with form filling. As part of this well-received community initiative, a clothes-bank is now a permanent fixture on our campus.
Also making a difference to local lives are some of our Fashion Textile students who offered a Knit and Natter group a temporary home in their department while the Hendon Library is closed for refurbishment.
Set up by Age UK, the group is run by Mill Hill resident Jackie Lai, "I love knitting and if the group isn’t on for any reason, I’m lost," she says. "There are so many lonely people out there and something like this can be a lifeline”.
In return, the women are sharing tips on knitting and crocheting with the Fashion Textiles students.
Inspiring students to volunteer is key to our Strategy, but we can proudly say that they don’t need much encouragement
Our students are proud to part of the London community and consistently passionate about helping those in need. So when a devastating fire engulfed Grenfell Tower in the borough of Kensington and Chelsea they wanted to help and quickly.
As soon as the tragic news broke, our students rallied around to organise an emergency response by coordinating volunteers at community centres and donations of food, clothes, money and blood.
Led by student Ayah Benberna and the Islamic Society, and supported by Middlesex Students’ Union, many students felt compelled to help.
One volunteer was Sabren Amin, Vice-President of the Arab Society at Middlesex and a regular volunteer at the Al Manaar Muslim Cultural Heritage Centre. “I don't think there’s any human that wouldn't want to help, especially knowing that the affected area was only a few tube stops away from us,” she says.
While it was an intense and harrowing experience, Sabren says it was incredibly heart-warming to see people from all walks of life join together.
“Many of our volunteers were fasting and the temperatures were very high, but that didn't stop them – they were lifting heavy boxes, running back and forth to sort through donations and walking in the heat to deliver them," she says.
With 50% of London’s nightclubs and 40% of its live music venues closing in the last 10 years, the capital is losing out on a vibrant night economy. Our Interior Architecture team think they have the answer. They’re taking a creative approach to redefining what it means to live in a night city, beyond clubs and bars. Imagine if museums, cafes and other community spaces were open until late.