Blog Archives

Nine Year Journey Reaches Final Stretch

We would like our closest Winch family and friends to know that after almost nine years, our CEO Paul Perkins will be moving on from the organisation to accept a new role with Save the Children. Although we are saddened by his departure, we are confident that our team can continue to build on the hard work and vision that Paul has instilled during his time here. We kindly ask that you bear with us until September when we will be able to announce more information on any new appointments.

Written by Ruqiya Osman

After returning from volunteering in Calais in October I did a little research to find out what is being done here, at home, in our communities to help migrants/asylum seekers. Amongst many other things, I noticed that there was a lack in fun community projects that bring people together. As spring rolled in I spent some time talking to Andre and Lita (Youth Workers at The Winch) about the different ideas I had. One of them being Iftar meals at The Winch during the month of Ramadan. As we further explored the idea it became more apparent that this was it!  

We teamed up with an organization called NOMAD (Nations of Migration Awakening the Diaspora) who run a migrant youth project. The ladies who run the organization helped us to plan and we invited all of their young people to join us too. We also invited some young people from UCL Academy as well as Former Camden Council Leader Sarah Hayward.  

We held the event every Thursday for four weeks starting from the 1st of June through the 22ndThe young people from UCL made a banner over the four weeks with the idea behind it being to make something that represents what a community means to us. Everyone who attended the event chose a word that describes community to them and painted it on the banner. 

Before the meal we had a brief workshop before we cooked together, set up the play room and at roughly 9:20 we sat down to eat.  Around 40 to 50 people came every week and by the last event everyone was familiar with each other, despite coming from different backgrounds we all connected through food, laughter and common interests.  

 

Thank you to everyone who attended and supported!! See you all at the next one. 

 

Six young people, one new staff member, and the ambition to succeed in all aspects of life. This is what The Company emulated this past spring. In February 2017, The Winch welcomed the eighth cohort of The Company along with new post-secondary coordinator Joe Oxley.  The Company is an initiative to build, support and evolve the business minds and ideas of 18 to 25 year olds in and around Camden.The beginning of the ten-week programme included a series of inductions, team work challenges, and group sessions. During the remainder of the course, the young people had workshops with MediaCom, Media Trust, and Bank of America. Additionally, they participated in two sessions with the former programme co-coordinator Frankie Taylor, two classes with marketing master Jamie Romaine, a session with former Provide associate Matt nation and lastly, a social media workshop with Westminster Kingsway College associate Wendy Breakell.

Meet our investment recipients

Billy Ward Tucker
Business: Digits.Four.Five.Six.

A Camden native photographer, Billy’s passion lies within the realms of street culture, music and trainers. His brand is aimed at working alongside other creative young people and helping capture their big break. Billy is honing his aesthetic and planning on using his investment for a variety of courses, equipment, and completion of his websites. He has already been involved in a number of workshops with Nike and test shoots with local musicians.

 

Femi Agbebi
Business: Sink or Swim

Premium alternative street-wear with a positive message. Femi has jumped in on trading through the Big Cartel, having test traded and sampled successfully. He is taking part in a collaboration of local designers known as the Intro Collection and will be popping up in Queens Crescent in July. Having been through a few sink or swim situations himself, Femi should be proud of his unique design ideas, concepts, and brand becoming a reality.

 

Sasha Whitaker
Business: Sasha’s Sandwiches

Before being part of this cohort, this idea-strung young lady had taken part in an event in which gave homeless and vulnerably housed young people the opportunity to pitch business ideas to professionals. She also won the Somers Town Sparks competition and was signposted by New Horizons Youth Centre to further develop her idea. She impressed the investment panel with her charisma and is now applying to Camden Council for a license to begin selling an assortment of sandwiches at the Swiss Cottage Market.

 

Laura Lartey
Business: Hear the Motion

Having already set up her own not-for-profit creative arts project “Hear the Motion,” Laura had a head start before joining The Company. Her idea is to develop a workshop to help children, adults and families connect and find increased happiness in their life through play, mindfulness, and self love.  Laura created “Play Date,” an interactive and experiential workshop centred on having fun and feeling great. After running three successful sessions, she has recently accepted a partnership with Platform in Islington to run a further series of six sessions.

 

What’s next?

After finishing The Company’s eighth cohort, Joe and The Winch are jumping into Cohort 9 with a set of strong minded young people. The group completed their team building week by battling their fear of heights at GoApe and also went white water rafting. After a busy ten weeks, their business ideas are scheduled to be pitched to an investment panel in early September.

 

Thank you,

Joe

The Winch

June saw over sixty leaders, professionals and Camden residents attend the launch of  the report ‘Building Impact Movements’ released by the North Camden Zone and Dark Matter. In its first two years, North Camden Zone gathered information on the effectiveness of the place-based system to impact child poverty in North Camden. The panel included The Winch’s CEO Paul Perkins, co-founder of Dark Matter Indy Johar; local parent Vera Perez; North Camden Zone Programme Manager Esther Norman and Habiba Nabatu from Dark Matter. Lunch was provided by Sasha’s Sandwiches, a catering business run by an associate of The Company.

To view the report or find out more please visit http://www.northcamdenzone.org/

We are happy to announce our summer events. Join us for adventures, sports, crafts, and more!

Flyers for our Transitions of Oral History Exhibition, Play Scheme Events, Youth Programme Activities, and Belsize Community Events are all attached here.

 

 

 

We have been very lucky to have some great people fundraise for us already this summer.

Peaky Climbers (shown below) raised £1000 for three different charities by bravely setting off on the three peak challenge! Sunayana Clark donated proceeds from her business Feel Good Treatments  in Southgate, giving people the opportunity to feel good and do good at the same time. Charli Sklar raised £370 for Belsize Community Library through her event ‘108 Sun Salutations’. Thank you all so much for your creative fundraising efforts!

The second Winch Quiz Evening consisted of laughter, seven rounds of quizzing and entertainment- all presented by local journalist and broadcaster Sonali Shah. We were excited to welcome over 65 people to the event and raised nearly £3000 in donations on the night through ticket sales, donations and monthly giving pledges. The event was catered by Arabesque on Winchester Road and mothers of children at the Winch, who made delicious dessert platters. We were kindly donated table flowers by Achillea in West Hampstead. A very big thank you to all those who attended and made the night as fun and successful as it was!

We had a cracking time at our Easter Playscheme where we laid out a lot of activities for the children! The first week of fun was themed ‘play and adventure through time’, in which the children learnt about toys from the past- making noughts and crosses, drafts, cup and ball games and a magnetic fishing game. They also learnt how to play owari (a traditional Ghanaian game) and explored bicycles through the ages.

The second week of the playscheme had an Easter theme, designing and making rabbit toys and cups, baking an Easter cake and most eggcitingly we rounded off the week with an egg hunt!

The  children also went  on some great trips this Easter, including visiting Three Acres community play project  (who The Winch are in partnership with), Primrose Hill, 360 Indoor Play area in Milton Keynes, Oxygen trampoline park in Acton and a cinema trip to see ‘Boss Baby’!

The play team also held a parent survey, to understand how the parents of our Winch children played in their childhood. The team received some fantastic and interesting responses, which they will be using for playscheme ideas in the future.

 

On Thursday 23rd February we were very excited to have Victoria Coren Mitchell organise two fantastic fundraising events benefiting Belsize Community Library. The day saw David Walliams do two readings, an afternoon event for children (and some lucky parents!) and an evening event for grown-ups, which was hosted by Victoria. David read from a number of his children’s books, including Gangster Granny and Ratburger, answered a lot of questions from our audiences and even revealed that a character who appears in his books was inspired by a local person!

Connecting parents has started an international cooking session, supported by London Borough of Camden through the Strategic Partnership Fund. Sessions are on the third Thursday of every month at Belsize Community Library.  Last month Denise showed the group her recipe for lentil soup, which was a favourite for adults and children alike.

The group has also started a toy swap and held a number of other sessions including a trip to Coram Fields and a Mindful Movement Class for parents and children (run by Vera, one of the parents in the group).

Parents and children from Connecting Parents and Cradles to crawling were able to take a trip to the Royal Academy to see the Russian Revolution exhibition, with tickets kindly donated by Bank of America Merrill Lynch.  They took part in a guided tour of the exhibition by a wonderful volunteer and ended the trip with a picnic in Green Park.

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