Monday, September 17, 2012

Inspire Hackney: Saturday 22 Sept - book your place‏

If you care about Hackney and the issues our communities face, then this Saturday’s Inspire Hackney is for you. It is at Morley Hall, City Edge, 125-127 Mare Street, Hackney, E8 3RH from 1pm to 5pm and you can register (for free) here:
Dance performance, followed by workshops
The event kicks off at 1pm prompt with a performance from African Dance troupe: EMASHI, followed by a presentation from Emmanuel Amevor from Centreprise (the community bookshop with a long history in promoting local writers which is facing closure) followed by a discussion of the power of communities organising together
The aim of the day however is not to have a series of ‘long boring speeches’, but to break into workshops to explore urgent issues for our communities.
The afternoon will be tailored so that you can chose to attend two of the eight workshop sessions (they will be running in parallel). There will also be a final informal ‘meet and greet’ session where you will be able to make those all important contacts with others who share your vision of Hackney.
Workshops include:
‘Digs’ a new organisation set up by private tenants to support each other at a time when renting in Hackney is becoming harder. The group aim to set up a mutual self-help network and to challenge bad landlords and bad practice from rental agencies.
Youth & Policing the relationship between our youth and the police is poisoned by a sense of suspicion and the feeling that the police view all young people as potential criminals. Experts from the legal profession and from working with young people will explore stop and search in our community.  
Unions and Communities with the government’s policies hitting jobs hard, and with youth unemployment hitting an all time high, is there scope for trade unions and communities to identify common objectives and to support each other? Dr Jane Holgate has been studying community trade union alliances on three continents and believes there is.
Borough of Sanctuary Hackney’s Borough of Sanctuary initiative is determined to make Hackney a consistently welcoming place to people who have been driven from their homes by oppression, war or civil unrest. The campaign is gaining support, but wants to see Hackney to be the first London borough to be formally accredited as a ‘borough of sanctuary’, come a long and find out more.
Public Transport: the government’s plans for transport will see ticket prices soaring above the rate of inflation and more and more rail workers losing their jobs. In particular we are likely to see less and less ticket office and platform staff, with the risk that stations become unsafe and unused outside of the rush hour. Come along and get involved in an attempt to set up a public transport user group for the borough.
Community Learning as unemployment soars and as job opportunities decrease, there has never been a better time to ‘upskill’. A new initiative in the borough is seeking to develop a network of trained ‘community learning champions’ who will be supported in identifying learning opportunities, formal and informal, that can assist our communities access learning. Whether it is to improve your CV or merely to develop a new interest, if you are interested in learning opportunities then come along to this session.
Unemployed Workers Hackney Unites is proud to have a strong unemployed workers group that has consistently challenged the myth that unemployed people contribute nothing. The group is currently working on a survey of unemployed, identifying the extent to which unemployed in Hackney are volunteering in our community, and also looking at a skills share project so that the unemployed can put their skills to good use.
Environment Hackney has long had a strong environmental movement. But we now have a government that appears to think that the way out of recession involves relaxing any targets on carbon emissions and abandoning planning rules. The discussion will focus on what we can do to limit the power of the ‘gamblers’ at the investment banks whose greed got us into this crisis, and whose solution is likely to make matters worse.
A time to discuss issues
Alongside the workshops, there will be a series of information stalls and time to discuss issues on a one-to-one basis.
Among the confirmed stall-holders are:
POhWER Whose skilled and trained advocates work with individuals who need information and support to be heard. They work with people who are disadvantaged, isolated and/or have complex needs. This service is available to anyone over the age of 18, who has a mental health condition and/or learning disability, who is living in a hospital, in residential care or in their own home
The People’s Kitchen (who run a weekly community kitchen in Dalston, serving delicious meals using surplus food. They aim to raise awareness of food waste, actively divert food from landfill, and bring people together through preparing and sharing a meal.

Envision, a social action charity which supports 16-19 year olds to investigate local social problems and lead creative community projects.
Hackney Community Law Centre recently nominated for two of the Law Society Excellence Awards, one of which was for innovation in the creation of their ‘pop up’ legal surgeries. To celebrate, they are bringing a ‘pop up’ legal advice surgery to Inspire Hackney
Sante Refugee Mental Health Access Project provide Advice, Advocacy, Befriending and Casework to Asylsum Seekers to enable access to essential services such as reputable Legal Advice and Hosting or Destitution provision.  Their Befrienders meet an asylum seeker once weekly and give practical support and encouragement.
Education Africa Teaching  a community venture to take 15 young people from various backgrounds, to Ghana to learn about the culture and history. They will then return and visit various schools and community groups in England sharing positive experiences with their peers
One of East London’s oldest and most famous community bookshops which is a centre of life long learning at the hub of a vibrant multi-cultural, multi-faith community. They are also behind WordPower – Europe’s biggest black literature Festival & book fair.

Hackney Refugee & Migrant Support Group an independent campaigning and support group with a long history in the borough.
Cultural Bridges and Nefes Folk Music Groups, a cultural group that uses traditional music to bring people together.
Hackney Coalition to Save the NHS a group that unites NHS users and practitioners in opposition to the government’s privatisation agenda of our most treasured national asset.
Workers Educational Association  founded in 1903, the WEA is now the UK’s largest voluntary-sector provider of adult education. through adult education the WEA challenges and inspires individuals, communities and society.
Don’t miss it!
So if you have an afternoon to spare this coming Saturday, you could not do better than to join us, our workshops and our stall-holders to discuss what is good about Hackney, and what we need to do as a community to make it better.
Please register in advance and please forward this email far and wide to ensure everyone who would want to know gets to hear about Inspire Hackney
Please help spread the word
Hackney Unites is a coalition for social justice, please cascade this email on and publicise its contents. If you are not already on our mailing list, you can sign up on-line (  to receive regular updates.
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Many thanks

John Page
Hackney Unites

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