Brixton residents were among those honoured for their work in their community at a ceremony this week.
The Lambeth Community Awards celebrates those that make the borough a better place through their selfless hard work.
Rob Goacher from Brixton was presented with the “Bringing your neighbourhood together” award for the support he provides for vulnerable people in the area.
Goacher liaises on their behalf with the council, doctors and landlords, helps with the shopping, and introduces them to each other so there is a mutual support network.
Lambeth Mayor, Cllr Donatus Anyanwu, hosted the ceremony at the Royal Festival Hall and praised the seven winners.
He said: “I was incredibly inspired at the Community Awards – these people that we recognised are champions of the borough. Their selflessness and commitment are commended and we can all learn from them.
“Lambeth would not be the wonderful place it is, without people like this and I thank them from the bottom of my heart. These people have made our lives beautiful and meaningful.”
Other winners included the Loughborough Junction Action Group (LJAG) who received the award for Voluntary or Community Organisation of the Year.
Anthea Massey, collecting the award on behalf of LJAG, said: “We have just such fantastic people in Loughborough Junction, all coming together to make something wonderful.
“We have our biggest project, Loughborough Farm, which is acting like an outdoor community centre, its bringing people to grow healthy food for the neighbourhood, it’s bringing people together in a wellbeing project, it’s engaging lots of people in something that is very positive for the neighbourhood.”
Presenters on the evening included Lambeth Police Borough Commander Richard Wood, Cabinet Member for Neighbourhoods Cllr Jane Edbrooke, Lambeth Youth Mayor Jacqueline Gomes-Neves, Clapham Common Councillior Bernard Gentry, Caroline Barker and Victoria Morris from the Terrence Higgins Trust, Deputy Lieutenant of Lambeth Rosi Prescott and Karen Morgan and Charlie Redman from one of last year’s winners Joy of Sound.
The winners in full are:
Lord Scarman award – Andrea Swainson
Andrea provides dance classes for people with learning disabilities. The weekly dance classes are a chance for the attendees to improve their physical health and to build self-confidence. The group perform in a theatre once a year – which takes a good deal of organising, and they also perform at the Lambeth Country Show.
Cleaner and greener award – Wayne Trevor
Wayne volunteered at the West Norwood Feasts, ran a Trade School growing edible flowers, and has helped local residents with their gardens. For the past year Wayne has dedicated a vast amount of time on a new project called the West Norwood Bzz Garage. He approached the garage and got their permission to transform the space with attractive bee-friendly plants.
Making Lambeth safer award – Kathleen Staniford
Ten years ago Kathleen Staniford joined the Lambeth South Volunteer Police Cadets as a cadet leader, and has done a truly inspirational job. Her connections with the Latin community has helped with recruitment and the cadet force has grown from 30 cadets when she joined to having 122 cadets in three units today.
Keeping Lambeth healthy award – Richard Keagan-Bull
Richard’s work has helped ensure those with learning disabilities are listened to and supported to live full and independent lives. He has a learning disability and is co-chair of the Lambeth Learning Disability Assembly and Chair of the Lambeth Forum. He represents Lambeth in two national charities – L’Arche’s National Speaking Group and Walsingham Support.
Young person’s community award – Matthew Bridge
Matthew works as a volunteer for Whippersnappers during the week, bringing children from local schools to their inclusive afterschool facility at Brockwell Lido. He has completed courses at Lambeth College and is a Prince’s Trust Award holder. On his weekends he helps at Rattray Road Play Street which is a local organisation providing safe play for local children, bringing communities together.
Voluntary or community organisation of the year award – Loughborough Junction Action Group (LJAG)
LJAG aims to improve the environment of Loughborough Junction and the lives of people who live and work there, through various engagement strategies, projects and events. The group runs the Loughborough Farm and a community gardening project. LJAG also support the Loughborough Junction Business Association which hosted a successful Christmas market day.
Bringing your neighbourhood together award – Rob Goacher
Rob is a resident of central Brixton, he provides support for vulnerable people, liaising on their behalf with the council, doctors and landlords. He helps with the shopping, and introduces them to each other so there is a mutual support network. Rob campaigns to keep the area clean, green and tidy.