Blog Archives

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.

We have been working with a charity called Tender, who have been running sessions over 12 weeks to teach some of our young people about healthy relationships and how to recognise and prevent domestic abuse. The sessions have used creative discussions and the arts to help explore these topics, with the young people devising their own drama pieces, writing poetry and making even making some of their own costumes. The final performance of the piece was held at the Soho Theatre, along with other organisations who had participated in similar sessions. We were very proud to see so much talent develop over the sessions and to see some Winch Family perform in such an exciting place!

The eighth Cohort of The Company had their pitch retreat at Sea House in Bognor Regis. In between barbecues, long walks on the beach and impromptu photo-shoots, each young person had the opportunity to spend some well needed time collating 10 weeks of understanding and thinking around their business idea into a 10 minute pitch (!), ready for the investment panel at Mediacom this week.


We are very proud that a previous participant in The Company has her very own book launch next month! Sadia Conteh-Mosere has written 'Single Mother- Breaking the Stereotype', based on the true story of Sadia's road to unplanned single motherhood. The book tackles the common issues faced by single mothers in today’s modern society and challenges negative stigmas. The launch is on Thursday 23rd March and tickets can be found here.

We had a very busy half term Half Term with 82 children joining us for 'Get Fit Week' at Playscheme. Everyone had lots of fun, taking part in activities such as boxing, dance, fitness games, creating a body map book and making a cardboard tube construction of how the muscles in our arms work.
There was also healthy eating cooking sessions, where we made frozen yoghurt lollies, 'superfit' rolls, fruit kebabs and healthy baked crisps. Trips included Primrose Hill Park and the Michael Sobel Sports Centre for Ice-skating, trampoline, basketball and football.
We ended with a Friday Fitness Finale of team relays and a big tug of war on the Swiss Cottage fountain area.

We held a celebration evening for the graduation of the seventh cohort of The Company. We would like to say a huge thank you to all the associates, supporters and Winch staff past and present who were able to attend and make it such a great night. The event also celebrated all of Fran Taylor’s hard work at The Company, as she will be moving on from her role to pursue her very own business! Well done to all those who graduated and the best of luck with your enterprise ideas.

Harriet Williams was awarded with her certificate at the Rank Foundation Award ceremony to celebrate her graduation from the GAP Apprentice Programme 2016 whilst working as the Youth Engagement Worker for the North Camden Zone. The inspiring event saw 35 young people from across the country graduating and celebrating their achievements and the difference they have made working with young people in their own communities. Well done Harriet for such a great achievement!