On Thursday 3rd November, Thames Ward Community Project formally relaunched as “Thames Life.” An evening that brought together local people, and partners, it was a celebration of the pioneering work taking place in the area led by residents. TWCP has evolved from a community project into a community development trust with a new ethos. The vision is one of ‘a diverse and vibrant community where residents are driving change’. Through creating positive spaces, including meet ups and forums, and opportunities for residents to be empowered, Thames Life hopes to uplift resident wellbeing for the long term.
The event was opened by trustee co-chairs Anna Pollard and Josiah Oyekunle who shared on the beginning of the project; being a direct response to the lack of social infrastructure in the area, to its growth of projects by thematic actions groups. They emphasized the need for assets managed by the community to ensure longevity of the project. As a local resident and worker for Thames Life, I shared on my journey from living in isolation of community activities to being fully engaged and how it has changed my perception of living here. Additionally, I shared Thames Life’s new branding and the need for an image that represented our dynamic and exciting future. CEO, Matt Scott ended the talks with our key highlights as community development trust, including the RiverView newspaper, Young Citizen Action Group, Ripple Nature Reserve resident group and work around health.
The evening continued with local entertainment from poet Romeo Murisa (@Swvrthy), DJ Josiah Oyekunle (@TheKingsDecree), and musician Joshua Nwafor (@j_jenius1). Local residents praised the impact of the night on social media:
“We’ve lived in Barking Riverside for 10 years and last night I was overwhelmed by the passion and community spirit by people that have only been in the development a few years.” – local resident
“To see members of the community relaxed and relating was a rejuvenating experience. The expression of experiences, music and poetry dressed the evening. Alongside was refreshments. Thanks everyone.” – local resident
Awesome evening – it was great to see so many people come together from all over the Thames View and Riverside wards. Very well done to all! – local resident
For more information visit our new website to find out more: www.thames-life.org.uk or @thameslifecdt on social media platforms.
Communications and Outreach Officer