How do we make a difference?
“…this project is an example of Localism at its most successful enabling [Stockwell Partnership] to identify and reach out to people who would be traditionally very hard to engage.”
Portuguese Advice & Capacity Building Project Evaluation, Ian Beever Consultancy & Training
Stockwell Partnership is a charity run by local people for local people. We improve the quality of life in the local area by developing projects, building partnerships, raising funds, and supporting residents to take action on the issues they care about. We work with residents to create a neighbourhood where people feel happy and safe, and where they have a sense of pride and ownership.
We run the Stockwell Forum, an open meeting of people living or working in Stockwell, which increases awareness of, and debate about, local issues and strengthens local networks.
- In the last year, we held four Stockwell Forums attended by over 130 people. The forums took place in local community venues – the Lansdowne Centre, now under management of Enterprise Unlimited; the Stockwell Centre; Oasis Children’s Venture Walter Segal building; and the new Art4Space Community Studios. Presentations included Transport for London consulting about the Stockwell Gyratory proposals and improvements to the Tube station retail offer; a local group of African mums presenting on our Community Leaders project; regular updates and discussion on local planning issues led by local resident Ian Beever; presentations by the chairs of the Friends of Tate South Lambeth and the Friends of Slade Gardens; and ‘Get to Know Your Community’ talks by Portuguese and Polish representatives.
We provide advice and advocacy for people living in financial hardship and difficult circumstances.
- Our bilingual Portuguese services help over 500 people per year with welfare, health, education, employment and housing support and advice. We support Portuguese speakers to volunteer on community projects, and we have worked with Portuguese community groups and businesses to support local events such as Stockwell Square launch and the Stockwell Winterfest.
- In 2015 we improved the English language and IT skills of 30 Portuguese people through training, and helped 20 people into jobs. Our Portuguese project is funded for three years by the BIG Lottery, with match funding from the Walcot Foundation which means that we can now support Portuguese speakers with debt management. For an independent report on the project see Stockwell Partnership Portuguese Project Evaluation Report
Our Bilingual Advocacy contract with Lambeth Early Years supports parents and children from major Lambeth ethnic communities by delivering training in Getting Work, Parenting Skills, Financial Resilience and Bilingual Parenting, offered in local Children’s Centres:
- In 2015 our bilingual advocates supported over 500 parents and children who speak Polish, Portuguese, Amharic, Somali, Arabic, Tigrinian, French, Italian, and Spanish. Parents were supported with a range of activities and interventions including ESOL, school places, school exclusions, welfare and housing advice, employment, and healthy eating. Central to the project delivery is the introduction of migrant parents to their local children’s centres, as a means of sustaining support to them.
In 2015, on behalf of the Evelina Child Hospital, we ran a series of focus groups with Somali, Portuguese and Tigranaya speakers to better understand barriers to accessing local health services. The report will be available shortly.
We support the development of local community groups, and work to strengthen the relationships and trust between local people and organisations throughout Stockwell:
- In 2014 we worked with Polish residents and the council to identify key issues of the Polish community in Lambeth (see our Polish Insight report http://www.stockwell.org.uk/wp-content/uploads/2012/03/Polish-Insight-Project-report.pdf). This involved a number of workshops and a mini-conference attended by the Polish Consul, residents, and senior Lambeth officers and councillors at the Town Hall in April.
- Following on from this we are working with the council to deliver a Poles Connect project, supporting the Polish community to improve financial independence and employability and to strengthen connections with the wider Lambeth community.
We facilitate a greater role for people in the decisions that affect their lives, e.g. by working with the council, Transport for London, and others to support residents to take part in open space improvements.
- We chair and coordinate the Stockwell Cross steering group, which oversaw the implementation of the Stockwell Square scheme and the Stockwell Square launch. We helped to support and promote the Transport for London consultation on the proposed removal of Stockwell Gyratory, and the connection of the War Memorial garden to the centre of Stockwell.
- Our bilingual staff help to engage Lambeth’s migrant communities in consultations on behalf of the council, including the Brixton Recreation Centre and Clapham Leisure centre consultations.
- We have a regular Planning Update item on the Stockwell Forum – led by local resident, Ian Beever – to keep people up to date on development issues in the local area. The briefing notes from these updates are publicised on our website and via our twitter account (Follow: @StockwellP_ship)
We work to make strategic improvements to public open spaces and buildings in Stockwell.
- Stockwell is a densely populated area with a shortage of open spaces and public buildings where people can meet, exercise and relax. In 2008 we produced the Future Stockwell Framework, based on extensive public consultation, to identify priorities to improve the public realm. This was adopted by Lambeth council into their Local Development Framework. We undertook a ‘Stockwell Changes’ consultation using a model made by volunteers to refresh priorities in 2012, which are part of Lambeth’s Local Plan.
- We are now piloting Lambeth’s first Cooperative Local Infrastructure Plan, which will further update local community priorities in the neighbourhood.
- We are working with Lambeth council, Community Matters and Lambeth Voluntary Action Council to develop 157 South Lambeth Road as part of Lambeth’s flagship Community Hubs programme.
We work with the Friends of Larkhall Park to run the Stockwell Festival, a chance for everyone to celebrate the local area and its vibrant culture.
- The 14th Festival had an estimated 5,000 attendees and 50 local businesses, charities, organisations and performers promoting their work in the community. 31 people volunteered, helping them gain new skills and experience.
A Selection of Previous Projects:
Building Cohesion in Stockwell
Our three-year Building Cohesion in Stockwell project funded by City Bridge Trust and run in partnership with International Alert developed activities to improve understanding and cohesion between twenty local community groups. The project culminated in the installation of the Dreams of Stockwell mosaic on the International Alert offices on Clapham Road. The film of the making of the mosaic was shown at the November Stockwell Forum (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=W2zPrEEAUhM). The mosaic was made by 17 local residents from a range of different backgrounds, and was themed around their visions for Stockwell.
Cook and Meet project: Knee High Design Council Challenge
Our partnership project with Brixton People’s Kitchen engaged mums and their children in Cook and Meet healthy eating sessions that reduced isolation and helped to reuse food which would have otherwise gone to waste. Our project was shortlisted by the Design Council’s Knee High programme (www.thekneehighproject.com), to identify radical new ways to reduce parent isolation.
Neighbourhood Enhancement Programme
We actively engaged over 900 people in the first phase of Lambeth’s Neighbourhood Enhancement Programme (2012) – and we consulted an additional 536 people from black and ethnic minority communities in the NEP roll out (Apr-Jun 2013)
Stockwell Urban II
Stockwell Partnership was the lead voluntary sector organisation working alongside Lambeth council on delivery of the Stockwell Urban II Community Initiative – a £12 million regeneration scheme that focussed on Larkhall and Stockwell wards, plus the estates covered by North and West Stockwell housing neighbourhoods. £6 million came from the European Union’s European Regional Development Fund (ERDF) and the remaining £6 million was secured through match funding. Stockwell was the only area in London to be awarded Urban II ERDF funds.