Our Team

Mission statement

We strive to ensure young people within our communities feel valued, seen and heard.

We do this by providing the space to explore identity and instil confidence and resilience as we endeavour to empower the marginalised voices of our young people.


Channette Barnard

Director and Services Manager

Hi, I am Chanette. I am a History Teacher by profession and I have worked in a large MAT for the last 6 years. I love working with children and young adults and I am passionate about my classroom being a place for exploration and discussion, not just about History but the world as it is today.


I am excited about my role with Empower My Voice because I am passionate about educating others and helping to seed change. I want to encourage open dialogue around the race and identity issues faced daily across our communities; and this project offers the opportunity to open up debate and promote long term change for adults and young people alike.

My passion for education and self growth is something I promote in my personal life too, and so I
am also pursuing my Masters in Race, Education and Decolonial thought, to better understand these issues in their contemporary context.

Flavia Ojok 

Director and Projects Manager 

Hi, my name is Flavia, I have been working within the education sector and more specifically within widening participation for a number of years. I am wholly passionate about channelling the aspirations of our young people by producing opportunities that open doors and ignite drive and passion.


Empower My Voice is something I felt an absolute need to get involved in any way I could. The drive, mission and team is something I seek to work to bring into the world. 


Not only does its projects align with all the values and morals I hold dear to myself but it is a chance to give and produce something that I never had as a young black girl growing up, with this in mind I know the positive impact its projects will have for current and future generations to come.


Dani Bello 

Wellbeing and workshop lead

Hi I'm Dani. I am the artistic director of Bello Mind and Soul, a creative and wellbeing service which helps you create to express and de-stress. I graduated in 2018 with a  BA (Hons)  in Creative and therapeutic arts and since then I  have been facilitating my own creative and wellbeing sessions; which have been delivered in schools, for mental health charities, and I am a regular feature on the BBC Radio Derby panel.


I am passionate about helping young people feel valued and empowered, from a very young age, and still today, I have been treated differently because of the colour of my skin; it affected my mental health so badly I didn’t feel like I was enough. What helped me was getting creative and expressing myself and just knowing that no matter what anyone says, I am still going to be proud to be me. This is why I have created a series of workshops as part of Empower my Voice, to help enable young black people to be proud of who they are, and to learn how they can love themselves - regardless of what people say. I believe that when we stand together  the true magic happens. I am proud to be a part of Empower my Voice!


Website: www.bellomindandsoul.com

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Baasit Siddiqui

Training Development Consultant

Hi. I'm Baasit Siddiqui. I am the director of Siddiqui Education Limited. Over the last three years I have combined my passion and decades of experience in education with my profile and connections in the television industry to deliver workshops and competitions to disadvantaged children across the country. 


My experiences in education, business and working with disadvantaged children has allowed me to also run a variety of teacher training sessions around strategies that build the aspirations and confidence of disadvantaged children. My core aim is to support bridging the attainment gap and supporting social mobility. 


I am proud to be associated with the Empower My Voice project as I am passionate about building the confidence and aspirations of children who have to deal with any form of disadvantage. To be able to share my experiences and expertise to inform educators to empower their black and ethnic minority students is something I am very honoured to be a part of. 


To find out more about me, please visit www.siddiqui-education.co.uk

The Knowledge Room (KRD) 

Resource and support team

KRD is a non-profit organisation which has been created to provide and source access to information on black history, black culture and to enlighten and educate.


Our primary objective is to instil self believe in the black community via various educational programmes and courses. We believe that self-identity is imperative and paves the way for success.

KRD was initially created in a direct response to the lack of representation of Black History in the current education curricula.

Our Page consists of a variety of DIFFERENT issues, topics and historic information giving our audience an incite of black origins heritage and culture.

At present we have an Instagram social media page touching upon topics such as:

· Black History

· Colourism

· Natural hair

· Systematic Racism

· Self-belief and positive thinking

The combination of topics provides our audience with a holistic view of black history and its heritage from past to present.


We are currently working alongside Bridge the Gap, child mental health support and Empower My Voice.

Bridge the Gap

Child Mental Health

Bridge the Gap Child Mental Health, a CIC based in Derby.


Since 2017 we have grown to be a valued presence in the community, offering vital support in both a preventive and reactive way. 

Our experience developing programmes and workshops, that educate and empower children have allowed us to build a community; a community where we see every day the disadvantages faced by black and ethnic minority children and young people.

We are proud to be part of such a humanist and relationship focused project that will be helping to raise so many children's self-esteem, and help them to feel their worth and value to this world.

You can find out more about us at www.jwbridgethegap.com

Philippa Michael, Volunteer

Hi, my name is Philippa. I have been a social worker for 20 years, working with diverse teenagers across the Midlands and I currently manage a supported accommodation service. I love to see young people reaching their true potential and dreaming BIG. 

As soon as I heard about Empower My Voice, I knew that this type of project is well needed and wanted to be involved as a volunteer. 

Racism, ignorance, and the lack of mainstream Black History have always concerned me, it is time to change the narrative! Information and support to strengthen identities is vital. As a woman of mixed heritage, I wish that this type of service had been around when I was growing up. I fully support Empower My Voice as they provide hope and inspiration to future generations.