Friday, March 30, 2012

Launch event for HOPE not hate‏

Can you do five simple things to stop the BNP winning a seat on the Greater London Authority?

  • Send a photo to be part of our poster campaign which celebrates Hackney's diverse communities
  • Attend the launch event of the London HOPE not hate campaign on Tuesday 10 April at the Dalston Eastern Curve Garden (from 10.30am, followed by an hour of delivering anti-BNP literature)
  • Volunteer to distribute our tabloid paper, either by taking some to distribute in your street, or through your community contacts, or by joining us either on 10th April (see above) or for a mass distribution on Saturday 14 April (details to be confirmed)
  • Attend our ‘hustings’ meeting on 29 April (where members of the community put their questions to candidates for the local GLA seat)
  • Publicise any or all of the above through your community networks, on facebook etc.
This is an email asking for your active support to prevent the British National Party (BNP) from winning a seat on the Greater London Authority. With the elections just weeks away, Hackney Unites is working closely with the national HOPE not hate campaign to ensure we mobilise our communities to vote and thereby help keep the BNP off of the GLA. This racist, Islamophobic, anti-Semitic, homophobic and anti-women party (to name just a few of their faults) need just 5% of the votes to get elected.

To beat them we need 19 votes to every one they get. They won’t get many votes here in Hackney, but the question is will our communities come out to vote?

What we do over the coming weeks will be decisive. You can help in the following ways:

Our Hackney not theirs
As part of our plans for the forthcoming local and London elections, Hackney Unites and the HOPE not hate campaign are planning to produce a giant poster to reflect the differences in values between our Hackney and that of the BNP – Help us proudly show that we stand together against bigotry and hatred. Please upload your image and be part of the picture.

Our local poster will contrast our positive vision of Hackney where people live and work together with that of the racist BNP - a party of hatred, division and fear.

Join us for the London wide launch of HOPE not hate’s 2012 campaign.
On Tuesday 10 April at 10.30am in the Dalston Eastern Curve Garden ( Hackney Unites will be hosting the London launch of HOPE not hate’s 2012 election campaign. There will be a number of celebrities (details to follow) a mobile billboard that will tour the borough. We want representatives of every section of our community at this event. We particularly want community leaders: business, political, faith, trade union, cultural, tenants, in short we want opinion formers to show that in Hackney we are all united against the BNP and we are determined to mobilise our diverse communities to get the vote out.
Please come along and once the launch is over, you can join us for an hour as we distribute the campaigning newspaper through doors in the Dalston area.

Tabloid newspaper
We have worked with HOPE not hate to produce a special edition of our community newspaper ahead of the elections (see a preview here: .

While the paper is unashamedly anti-BNP, it is also pro our community, and seeks to show what we can do when we work together. It also publicises our hustings meeting where we will have four candidates for the local constituency seat answer questions from our communities. You can help us mobilise a massive anti-BNP vote in Hackney by distributing it down your street, or through community groups or organisations that you are a part of. If you can help please register on-line: or  reply to this email.

We are also organising a mass distribution on Saturday 14th April from 10am to 4pm. The exact details are still being finalised, but we will try to delivery a paper to every home in parts of the borough that have not already been covered) reply to this email to be signed up to help.

Hustings meeting
Of course at a time like this we are very concerned to keep the BNP out of city hall. However, in Hackney for a number of years we have also been concerned about holding local politicians to account. People who stand for office in Hackney should feel accountable to our communities.

That is why we have organised a Hustings meeting at the wonderful Arcola Theatre on Sunday 29 April. We have the four leading candidates standing in the local constituency (London North East), and it is our intention to put them on the spot, to provide an opportunity for members of our communities to question them and then decide how they wish to vote.

The meeting is being called: ‘They want our votes: we want answers.’ The Conservative, Green, Labour and Liberal Democrat candidates will be there. One thing we guarantee, it will not be boring!

To help us estimate number please pre-register, and encourage others to do so by visiting the following website:

Please forward this email on to everyone and anyone within our communities in Hackney who you think may wish to support this initiative.

Hackney Unites is a coalition for social justice, if you are not already on our mailing list, you can sign up on-line (  to receive regular updates.

Many thanks

John Page

Hackney Unites

Sunday, March 25, 2012

Hackney Unites Tabloid - front page

Hackney Unites Tabloid - p2

Hackney Unites Tabloid - p3

Hackney Unites Tabloid - p4

Hackney Unites Tabloid - p5

Hackney Unites Tabloid - p6

Hackney Unites Tabloid - p8

Wednesday, March 21, 2012

Write about London 2012 Games - Mapping the Change Journalism Programme

Are you a Hackney resident interested in the London Olympic and Paralympic Games?
Would you like to develop your own stories and learn new journalism skills?
Do you find the idea of meeting established journalists and seeing your words in print appealing?
If the answer is yes, then Hackney Museum’s Mapping the Change Journalism Programme is for you.
Funded by the Heritage Lottery Fund, and delivered by Words of Colour Productions, this FREE seven week programme has eight places for aspiring adult journalists who live, work, study or receive services in the London Borough of Hackney.
Held on Saturdays, you will have the opportunity to develop your ideas into stories, explore how the London Olympic and Paralympic Games impacts on your life and your community, and have your work published in a limited edition newspaper called Hackney Circuit. There is also the potential to gain work experience at the BBC.

DeadlineFriday 13th April 2012

Here's what two recent participants thought about the programme:
“The course is a fantastic introduction to the journalism industry. I have always been interested in a career in journalism, and this course has given me the building blocks I needed to progress further.”
Keith Mahon - Mapping the Change Journalism Programme 2011

“I found the course enjoyable for its well-structured, varied and balanced programme of activities and visits. Learning from relevant journalists and speakers was a plus.”
Jane Tchan - Mapping the Change Journalism Programme 2011

For more information about how to apply visit:

Tuesday, March 20, 2012

£895,775 Secured for Family Crisis Intervention Work in Hackney

Bybreen Samuels, the CEO of Insights To Impact
Insights To Impact has successfully helped five charities based in Hackney to secure £895,775 from the Big Lottery Fund – Improving Futures Programme. The partnership is led by Hackney CVS.
Jake Ferguson, Chief Executive of Hackney CVS says “We commissioned Insights To Impact to work with our partnership - Hackney Families First, to help us cultivate our vision of supporting 210 families, by writing an engaging and robust business plan. 
Our delivery partners; Claudia Jones Organisation, Daymer, African Community School and Inspire! are dynamic frontline organisations that are passionate about the development of children and families.  Their innovative approaches have already changed the lives of children and families, in crisis.  The grant from the Big Lottery Fund will enable the partnership to further embed their processes and practices to greater effect. Furthermore, a the work of our partnership is fully supported by the London Borough of Hackney.”
In a climate of growing demand for financial resources from non profit organisations when the supply of public sector is declining and trust funding is oversubscribed, it is imperative that organisations continue to innovate and give wider consideration on how to create sustainable strategies.
Bybreen Samuels, Chief Executive of Insights To Impact says, “There are a number of factors that can support the creation of a sustainable organisation.  Two important ones are; creating a business model that clarifies the rationale for how income is going to be generated.  As well as developing new or enhancing current donor relationships. And a key element for this is that organisations should find ways to build upon those relationships through educating donors about who they really are and what they do.  Education builds trust and reassures donors that strategies and activities are moving in the right direction.”
Insights To Impact provide business optimization services to non profit organisations and enterprising individuals.  They take the form of; fundraising, business modelling, marketing systems and performance coaching.  For more information please contact: Bybreen Samuels on 0208 761 2003, Skype – bybreen, Twitter @BybreenSamuels

Tuesday, March 13, 2012

Hackney Unites Unemployed Workers Project - meeting this and every Friday

We are a community group formed last year to bring together and empower local unemployed people.

We meet every Friday (12-2pm) and lunch is provided. Meetings range from practical workshops to professional advice sessions. From discussions on health issues to knowing your benefits rights; stop and search issues to signposting free skill workshops in the borough. We often have speakers from other community organisations to inform us of what they are doing.

Why not come along.. take part in our activities and share some lunch. 

Where: Community Hall, Navarino Mansions, Dalston Lane E8 1LB
1st Meeting: March -Time: 12.00 –  (all are welcome)

Next meetings:
Friday 16th March -  Age UK Hackney - Come and hear about opportunities for older people offered by the Age Well project. This is a mid-life project for people aged 50-65 years. Activities include walks, exercise, Yoga, and other healthy living activities. Also social events and computer training. Come along and find out more.
Friday 23rd March -   Getting Organised  - With a change in government  and public spending cuts, change has arrived in the form of welfare to work, a cap on housing benefits, no decent employment prospects and rising prices.  With so much change happening around us it is easy to feel powerless to effect these changes or even imagine getting the change that we want.  Getting organised and working together is the only way we can affect what is happening in our lives. This session will explore why and how we can organise to improve things in Hackney.
To find out more about us visit: or

Monday, March 12, 2012

Hackney Unites update...get involved.

This email gives you notice of a couple of forthcoming meetings which we have been asked to publicise and asks for your support in distributing our forthcoming community newspaper.

Can you spare an hour to help organise our communities?
Hackney Unites is asking you to set aside one hour in early April to help distribute our free community paper: Hackney Unites. The articles are written, it is going to be a great read, but we need help to get it distributed through letter boxes and community outlets in the borough.

It takes just one hour to distribute 300 copies door to door, so we need just over 150 volunteers to take 300 and put them through their neighbours’ doors. If you can help, please sign up on-line: or simply respond to this email with your offer of help.

There are three key themes:
  • Mobilising our communities to vote in the Greater London Assembly elections. We want to play our part in preventing a repeat of the shameful result in 2008 when the racist British National Party gained a seat on the London Assembly. Due to the proportional representation system the BNP need just 5% of the London wide vote to win a seat, put another way, there needs to be 19 non BNP votes for every one they get. This is why every anti-BNP vote in Hackney counts.
  • Ensuring that politicians that stand for office in Hackney are answerable to our communities. This is why we are holding a hustings meeting on 29 April, when residents can put their questions to the four leading candidates for the North East London assembly seat. The hustings meeting will be the front page article under the headline: ‘They want our votes: we want answers!’ To help us estimate number please pre-register, and encourage others to do so by visiting the following website:
  • Organising our communities: with soaring unemployment, a housing crisis, and our services being threatened by cuts and privatisation, we need to find a strong collective voice. The paper will be featuring articles on the campaign and cultural groups in the borough who are trying to make a positive difference for our communities.

It is going to be a great read, so please, as requested above, if you can help with distribution, let us know: either complete the on-line registration or reply to this email

The papers will be available from 6 April and needs to be distributed before the 27 April.

Free Schools
If it is hard to imagine why anyone would be against a ‘free’ school, then it is a credit to whoever invented the name for schools which may well cost our children’s education very dearly. A private consortium is claiming the support of 500 parents to establish a ‘free school’ in Hackney. There are lots of concerns about these privately run schools, which suck cash out of the education budget and target resources at those children who are already the most likely to succeed. Local teachers, parents and residents are keen that there is a proper debate about our children’s education and have called a meeting at the CLR James library, Dalston Square, from 7-8:30pm on Wednesday 14th march.

Cultural links with Palestine
A group of young Palestinian women are currently on a skills sharing visit to the UK. The Beit Sourik/Hackney Twinning Group are keen to promote cultural links between Hackney and Beit Sourik in Palestine. They have organized an exchange which will bring ten young women from Palestine to spend ten days with ten young women from the UK. The project will give them an opportunity to find out about each other's lives as young women in Palestine and Britain and in country and city. They will prepare and teach each other a variety of skills, contrast the skills women had in the past and that young women need now and consider together how women's lives are changing. They will take pictures, video and write about the experience to make web material to record this experience.

On 20 March there will be an opportunity for members of our communities to meet some of these young Palestinian women and find out what their life is like in the occupied Palestinian territories.

6 - 7.30 pm
Basement Room, Dalston CLR James Library,
Dalston Square,
E8 3BQ
Refreshments available (donations welcome!)

This meeting has been organised by the Beit Sourik/Hackney Twinning Group
For more information email or phone 020 8802 4604

Unemployed Workers Project
With unemployment at a high, and with youth unemployment at a disgraceful level, Hackney’s unemployed are getting themselves organised. They meet every Friday at the tenants room in Navarino Mansions, on Dalston Lane (junction with Navarino Road) from 12 till 2pm, with a lunch included. They have regular guest speakers, are looking to create a workers co-operative to market the skills of the borough’s unemployed and are planning a major conference/gathering in Dalston in the next few months. If you know someone who is unemployed, (or under-employed) please encourage them to get involved. More info from

Please feel free to forward this email on to anyone within our communities in Hackney who may wish to support these initiatives.

Hackney Unites is a coalition for social justice, if you are not already on our mailing list, you can sign up on-line (  to receive regular updates.

Many thanks

John Page

Hackney Unites

Friday, March 9, 2012

Free home energy assessment for all Hackney residents before end of March

Save money on your heating bills and reduce carbon emissions

Would you or someone you know like any of the following?

- free home energy use advice
- a free home energy assessment with advice on how to apply for the Green Deal next year and followed up with a written report
- free thermal imaging of your home showing where you can save heat

Book now at or call 0207 503 1645.  We have morning, afternoon and evening appointments available, 7 days a week, until the end of March Visits will take between 30-45mins and we can fix a time that is convenient with you.  Thermal image shots will need to take place in the evenings.   

People working on this project are all Hackney residents, mostly volunteers, and are involved in local environmental initiatives such as Transition Hackney, Transition Stoke Newington, Transition Finsbury Park, Sustainable Hackney, Arcola Energy, The Green Party and Hackney Friends of the Earth.  We want to help neighbours increase the energy efficiency of their homes and reduce their carbon emissions and fuel bills.  You'll usually be visited by 2 people, one person who normally does this as their day job and one person who also has a good working knowledge of energy saving measures and resources. 

We can also provide draft proofing strips and radiator heat reflecting panels at cost price.  For vulnerable or disabled residents, we can help with fitting these.  We are also working to create a network of local tradespeople skilled in sustainability adaptions who can help residents with improvments.

This is the Dalston Energy Angels project, coordinated by the Arcola Theatre and funded by the Dept of Energy and Climate Change.  For more information or contact

Thursday, March 8, 2012

No Free Schools in Hackney - Public meeting 14th March