For centuries, the UK has been home to hundreds of thousands of people identifying as East and Southeast Asian (ESEA). Yet to this day, it’s a struggle to see representation on our screens, in government, and in other prolific positions.
This was made all the more apparent during the pandemic, when hate crimes, prejudice, and discrimination against people of ESEA descent were at an all-time high.
In a collective stride towards fostering inclusivity and combating discrimination, “On Your Side”; a dedicated charity based in the United Kingdom was formed with the aim of supporting individuals identifying with East or Southeast Asian communities. This organisation provides a safe space where individuals can seek both support and refuge by reporting instances of racism or any manifestation of hate.
These incidences can include verbal or abusive language, discrimination, harassment, threatening behavior, physical abuse, and bullying.
The organisation additionally offers a 24/7 free helpline and website where you can find support, access resources, and make a report.
On Your Side recognises that language barriers can be an obstacle, so they use trusted interpreters where needed.
Spearheaded by the independent charity Protection Approaches, “On Your Side” functions in close collaboration with other East and Southeast Asian community organisations. The charity operates independently of the UK government, a distinctive aspect that underscores its autonomy and impartiality.
Through its approach, “On Your Side” aims to have a significant impact by not only providing a platform to report incidents of hate and racism but also by offering an array of support services. Whether you have experienced an act of discrimination or seek advice, the charity welcomes all voices to come forward. Its overarching aim is to be a catalyst for change, creating a society where every individual is embraced regardless of their background.
The importance of receiving reports enables the organisation to compile data, which can be utilised to bolster funding efforts, in addition to passing on anonymous information to the police when needed.
On Your Side is more than an organisation; it is an association that aims to empower long-standing communities that have been long denied a voice.