Babbasa and OurCity2030: Creating a more inclusive city

Matt Rogers
Head of Development | Babbasa
3rd January 2024

Babbasa is a Bristol-based social enterprise, established in 2013 to inspire and support young people from low income and ethnic minority communities to pursue their professional ambitions.

We believe that though talent is evenly distributed across the globe, opportunities are not, and work with young people, businesses, and the community to address inequalities and produce a fairer city. Since we began we have supported over 4,000 young people. 

As well as supporting young people from ethnically diverse and disadvantaged communities to pursue their professional ambitions, we also believe we have a responsibility to support local businesses to create the enabling and inclusive environment needed for these young people to thrive. 

This growing realisation led to the launch of Babbasa Recruitment & Inclusion Services (BRIS) in 2021,which was designed to increase the understanding of EDI within organisations in order to improve their inclusiveness, as well as improving the diversity of their workforces by increasing the number of minority applicants for their roles.

We now support organisations across Bristol and across all sectors with our inclusion services and recruitment services, working with a total of 52 organisations in 2023, including Triodos Bank, where we delivered intercultural communications skills training to more than 300 Triodos co-workers. 

What is OurCity2030?

In order to scale our impact for young people and businesses, November 2022 saw the launch of the OurCity2030 initiative, powered by Babbasa and the One City Office. 

This bold vision for Bristol aims to support at least 2,030 young people from low-income households, starting from inner city Bristol, to secure a median salary role by 2030. Its purpose is to lift individuals out of poverty, increase representation in the workplace and create a new generation of role models for society. 

Ultimately, OurCity2030 aims to support minoritised young people to secure meaningful employment; help increase representation and inclusion within the workplace and drive a city-wide strategy and momentum for more purposeful cross-sector collaborations.

Why is OurCity2030 needed?

Sadly, this vision for change is much needed. Despite Bristol being the economic powerhouse of the West of England region, consistently reporting higher than average economic growth over the last 15 years, not all of its citizens share in this success.

Research shows Bristol is the 7th worst of 348 districts in England and Wales for black and ethnic minority communities to live and thrive, with 41 areas in the most deprived 10% in England, and an ethnic employment gap which is twice the national average.

The challenge for minority groups in the city has been further exacerbated by the Covid-19 pandemic, property prices rising faster than wages (particularly in inner city Bristol), and technological automations replacing low-paying jobs. This threatens the overall cultural richness and economic prosperity enjoyed by Bristol in recent years, and sits uneasily alongside the city’s positive reputation as a great place to live and work.

OurCity2030 therefore seeks to bring together key city stakeholders to break this cycle of inequality and deprivation, and open up opportunities for underrepresented young people.

How can I get involved?

Whilst the last year has seen good progress, the OurCity2030 vision is all about collaboration, Babbasa cannot achieve it alone. If you are a Bristol business, join us and be part of the change to create a new generation of coders, creatives, activists, architects, engineers, entrepreneurs and social scientists who are truly diverse in race, faith, culture and class. 

Find out more, and register your interest at

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