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, 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.
Highlights from our 2022 work programme
Supporting individuals in need
Our Stockwell Portuguese Community project, funded by the National Lottery Community Fund, has seen an increase in demand with the cost of living crisis. Clients are coming to us with challenges including claiming benefits, help with finding employment, and food poverty.
In total, we supported 275 people with improved finances, principally through support with claiming welfare benefits. 15 people were supported with employability skills and 15 gained new or better paid work. 48 older and / or disabled people reported improved wellbeing through friendship calls. 64 people were supported with IT skills and 28 people from Lusophone minority groups from Cape Verde were supported through outreach activity. 19 people reported better connections with their local neighbourhood. The project engaged 5 volunteers.
Our Walcot Foundation multilingual financial resilience project meant we were able to provide additional support to minorities to increase their financial resilience including budgeting skills. 187 low income Lambeth residents who speak Portuguese (123), Spanish (60) or Italian (4) benefited from baseline assessments of their financial positions, with plans to cover awareness and support on how to prevent debt and maintain healthy finances.
As a Lambeth council Early Years provider, we delivered bilingual advocacy sessions (Portuguese, Spanish) remotely and in Stockwell children’s centre on subjects ranging from parenting to accessing services to volunteering and active citizenship. 25 parents were supported.
Supporting community action
The Thriving Stockwell programme aims to improve health and wellbeing in the neighbourhood through raising awareness of, and better connecting, services and people, and supporting residents to develop healthy activities. Core partners include ourselves, the Stockwell Primary Care Network (‘Stockwellbeing’), Good People, Art4Space, Stockwell Park Community Trust, and Lambeth Together; the wider network includes over 30 groups and organisations in Stockwell.
This year, we secured £69k from the Neighbourhood Community Infrastructure Levy to match Lambeth Together funding and run a 2-year programme with a 0.5 FTE Community Builder to connect individuals to services and develop community activities in two Community Living Rooms and other Stockwell community venues / open spaces, as well as to roll out the new Thriving Lambeth website. Several new regular groups were established in the Community Living Rooms at Art4Space and Stockwell Park Community Trust, including a chronic pain support group, a black ethnic minority women’s group and an Italian speaking group. A Horn of Africa group and tai chi / yoga classes were also set up. The Horn of Africa group was supported by Novartis and King’s Health Partners as part of a project to reduce cardio-vascular disease, particularly in Ferndale ward which has the highest levels of heart attack and stroke in SE London.
We ran over 100 family activities in Stockwell as part of our activities with LEAP. We undertook outreach and events in partnership with local organisations and community groups including St Stephen’s Children’s Centre, Tate South Lambeth Library, Morley College, supporting over 1000 parents and children, including over 300 new families.
Special campaign activities have been tied in with other calendar events such as Black History Month, Diwali, Christmas, Eid and LGBT+ History Month.
We also ran a regular Little Wanderers nature education programme in Vauxhall Park, a yoga and baby massage class, and several storytime and singing events with arts and crafts.
Poles in South London Heritage project
In August 2022 we completed our 2-year Poles in South London community heritage project. The project was funded by the Heritage fund, with additional support from the Polish Embassy. The project incorporated oral histories made with members of the Polish diaspora, archived at the Bishopsgate Institute, a Polish Heritage walking map, and a range of community events, walks and activities including a photography project and exhibition, a podcast and a puppet show animation with the Shadow Theatre company. The project has attracted support from Polish cultural institutes. For an overview and more details see the project website: https://polesinsouthlondon.wordpress.com/
As part of our work with the Lambeth Forum Network we delivered three Stockwell Forums. The forums are a means to raise awareness of local initiatives and connect residents with each other and service providers. We had presentations and discussions by a food project for early years families, St Stephen’s Pantry; by Lambeth Links, Lambeth’s new LGBTQIA+ forum; on Lambeth’s Climate Action Plan by Lambeth Council; and on the Thriving Stockwell project and website. The forums also provided a mechanism for residents to update others on their own events and activities.
Lambeth Community Hubs Network
We continued our work with Lambeth council and the Lambeth community hubs to develop our connectivity and services as part of the Community Hubs programme. This included a new website, with model policies to support community hubs and groups in Lambeth. We also undertook feasibility work on combined purchasing and supported High Trees Community Development Trust with their Collaborative Working best practice project.
Supporting the local environment
We secured funding for the Stockwell Christmas tree from St Stephen’s Charity, Thriving Stockwell / Lambeth Together, and LEAP. Fencing and lighting was supplied by Lambeth council. The Lighting Up ceremony was preceded by Thriving Stockwell community activities in Stockwell Community Centre run by LEAP, Art4Space, Roots’n’Shoots, the Health and Wellbeing bus and Morley College. Attendees then came out at 5pm for the Lighting Up ceremony in the Memorial Gardens, led by Florence Eshalomi MP and two local Reverends, with carols from St Andrew’s primary school and St Stephen’s choir. Over 100 people attended the event.
Partnerships and Networking
In addition to our project-based partnerships, we are active members of the following Lambeth forums and organisations:
Lambeth Portuguese Wellbeing Partnership – a collaborative of local community individuals and groups, NHS and Portuguese Doctors, Pharmacists and Lambeth Council members who are committed to working together and combining our individual skills and resources for the health and wellbeing of our local communities, with an focus on the Portuguese community
Lambeth Early Action Partnership (LEAP) – we are a board member of the 10-year, BIG Lottery funded LEAP programme, which aims to significantly improve the lives of children in four wards of Lambeth
Lambeth Forum Network – a partnership of Lambeth’s nine community forums with Lambeth council, sharing best practice and resources
Lambeth Community Hubs Partnership – a partnership of local community hubs and Lambeth aiming to achieve a shared vision of local community hubs providing sustainable, trusted services to the community over 25 years +
Lambeth VCS partnership – partnership of Lambeth voluntary and community sector with the council to develop and implement a VCS strategy to ensure the sector thrives in an increasingly challenging environment
Lambeth Children and Families VCS partnership – partnership of Lambeth council, CCG and VCS providers to share resources and best practice
We are also a member of Locality, the national community development network
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.