The archive contains papers created and collected by the Asian Youth Movements established in Bradford and Sheffield in the late 1970's and early 1980's. The Asian Youth Movement in Bradford continued the activities of the Indian Progressive Youth Association which had been formed in the city in 1977. It was decided that 'Asian Youth Movement' (AYM) was a more inclusive name and the group became known as this in 1978.
The aims and objectives outlined in the Constitution of the AYM included promoting "the interests of young people from (or originating from) the Indian sub-continent, i.e. Bangladesh, India, Pakistan and Sri Lanka, in the areas of political, cultural, social and sports activities". Further objectives within the constitution included opposing all forms of discrimination, supporting national liberation movements in other countries and keeping members informed of developments taking place in the Indian sub-continent.
AYM (Bradford) instigated and supported campaigns both locally and nationally relating to deportation cases, racist attacks, police harassment, workers' rights, racism in schools and defence campaigns for groups such as the Bradford 12 and Newham 7. They also demonstrated solidarity for national liberation movements in countries such as Ireland, Palestine and South Africa, supporting, for example, the Palestine Solidarity Campaign and the Bradford Anti-Apartheid Group.
AYM (Bradford) became established within the Bradford community and acquired their own premises, the Saathi Centre. They ran successfully as an organisation until 1986-87. The group were influential on the formation of other Asian Youth Movements across the country and were instrumental in efforts to establish a National Asian Youth Movement.
AYM (Sheffield) was formed in 1982 following the success of the Sheffield Bradford 12 support group. They supported local and national campaigns focussing on racist attacks and police harassment. For example they campaigned against violence towards taxi drivers in Sheffield and supported local families experiencing racial violence and intimidation. AYM (Sheffield) also supported national defence campaigns, for example, organising groups in Sheffield to campaign for the Newham 8 and Newham 7.
Like AYM (Bradford) the Sheffield group were involved in anti-deportation cases and support for international and local workers' rights campaigns including the miners' strikes and trade union activities. The Sheffield Defence Campaign was later formed and consisted of individuals and anti-racist groups including the Asian Youth Movement, the Sheffield Campaign Against Immigration Laws and Labour Party groups.