Published 18 Feb 2022

Katherine, Community Southwark's Projects Team Manager, tells us about the work of her team: "The work of the Projects Team covers diverse areas and it is exciting to see the positive impact it has on the VCS..."

Hello to all our Community Southwark members!

My name is Katherine and I am Projects Manager at Community Southwark. I joined Community Southwark in October 2021 from a background of working in the statutory and voluntary and community sector for over 10 years, mostly abroad.

I support the team that coordinates projects that build capacity in the voluntary and community sector (VCS) in Southwark. Currently, the team supports social prescribing in Southwark – a holistic approach to health and wellbeing, coordinates the Southwark Food Action Alliance Network (SFAA), whose purpose is to increase food security in Southwark, and a small grants pilot project where funds have been given to five VCS partners to distribute to individuals to enhance their physical and mental well-being.

The work of the Projects Team covers diverse areas and it is exciting to see the positive impact it has on the VCS and the community in Southwark. The challenges of food security and inequality for example, are particularly pertinent as we (hopefully) emerge from the pandemic. THE SFAA network is in an excellent position to continue to develop and collaborate to tackle food issues all over the borough. It has been heart-warming to see the impact of a small grant for individuals to use on whatever they would like to make a meaningful difference to their lives and improve their physical and emotional well-being. With an increased focus on well-being particularly during and in the aftermath of the pandemic, it is also clear to see the vital role the VCS play in social prescribing – many organisations can provide prompt culturally-appropriate tailored support that supports health and well-being for individuals and bring long-term benefit to the communities they work in.

Spending time over the last few months getting to know colleagues in the VCS and seeing the amazing work they do day in day out is inspiring and a real privilege. There are so many groups and individuals who make a difference to people’s lives every day despite ever mounting challenges. I look forward to hearing more in my time at Community Southwark and continuing to support their work.

Do you have an idea of how we can build capacity in the VCS in Southwark? If so, do contact me on [email protected] or 020 7358 7021.