Facebook Twitter Instagram

Meet an Agent of Change

Eurydice runs a community organisation dedicated to making our borough dyslexic-friendly.

Eurydice Caldwell is a dyslexic-friendly life coach who runs GENER8TE, which helps create dyslexic-friendly work environments. She’s also a recent graduate of the Agents of Change leadership programme, which she says has been “transformational”, giving her new skills and community connections to help her projects thrive.   

What does your business do?  

One in five people in our community are dyslexic. GENER8TE creates working environments which are friendlier for dyslexic people: I am passionate about people fulfilling their talent. Our mission is to make Hammersmith & Fulham the first dyslexic-friendly borough in London. We’ve been working towards that goal since 2013.  

I teach people how to make content and ways of working more dyslexic-friendly. I am so passionate about getting this integrated throughout the borough. It would change the face of our community, not just for dyslexic residents and workers but economically and socially. If people can engage in the accessible materials you are sharing, then you have reduced the barriers to them engaging.

I’m dyslexic myself. In 2007, I completed a course which helped me realise that my dyslexia was a strength – it really ‘flipped my script’. The training I deliver now is a consolidation of the skills I have learned.  

As well as my work with GENER8TE, I’ve also worked as a dyslexic-friendly life coach in the community since 2013. I’ve helped clients implement strategies to complete their degrees, authors publish their books, and teachers with methods to support dyslexic students in the classroom. It’s those real-life moments when you meet people on the road who say to me: I am now working, or I am studying this.

I currently also work in adult education at a local community centre called Urban Partnership Group at the Masbro Centre – I’m a qualified teacher specialising in special educational needs. I run a dyslexic-friendly IT & Employability course and an English course primarily for people with English as a second language. 

Why did you join Agents of Change? 

When we started GENER8TE, we began by going to every community event possible but didn’t really gain any traction. I went to the Agents of Change networking events, and I realised this was the place to build contacts in the local community and to upskill myself.    

What did you learn? 

After joining the Agents of Change leadership programme, I received two training sessions delivered by an in-house trainer once a month. The trainer taught us how to run our business, upskilled us in leadership and provided fundamental training in creating a business, motivating ourselves and helping us and our projects become successful. You also have a designated mentor.  

Having been on the leadership programme, I’m in the position to push my business forward. It’s been transformational – I have learnt a lot. There are two unique things about Agents of Change. First, it’s local, so everyone has a relatable experience of living in the area. People may think London is one place, but it’s not. I have lived in different areas of London and it’s different from Hammersmith and Fulham.  

The other fact is that we are all women – it feels really important to have this space. It feels like we’re levelling the playing field. I have built friendships and a network of ladies whom I am able to connect with on a local level.  

What would you like other community organisations to know about dyslexia? 

Harness the strength of your workforce and the one in five people with dyslexia by becoming dyslexic-friendly. You will become more communicative, powerful, and heard. You will become more inclusive as an individual, organisation and community.  

What is coming up next? 

I am looking to work with bigger businesses. I have just launched training on how we want business to become more dyslexic-friendly and the impact it makes. 

  

 

 

 

 

 

 


Find out more 
  • Agents of Change is a six-month free accredited community leadership programme based in Hammersmith & Fulham. It is a network for women who have an active interest in making a social change in the north of the Borough.  The programme mentors and supports women to overcome barriers in delivering community and social based projects by equipping them with the tools and skills to tackle local issues. It’s delivered in partnership with Imperial College London, Hammersmith United Charities, Lyric Hammersmith, and the London Borough of Hammersmith & Fulham.
  • If you’re interested in joining the Agents of Change programme and network please find out more here or register here. If you would like to find out more about the Agents of Change Leadership Programme, please contact the Community Engagement Team at whitecity.community@imperial.ac.uk 
  • To access Eurydice’s dyslexic-friendly coaching and training contact her at caldwelleurydice@hotmail.com 

Opening our doors to older people in need of a home

We're inviting older people on a low income who need an affordable new home to tour our almshouses.

Read More ...

New Flexible 3 Year Grant holders announced

Find out more about some of our Flexible 3 Year Grant holders

Many of our grant holders are facing the perfect storm of increasing costs coupled with increasing demand. Our new Flexible 3-Year Grants programme was launched in response to feedback from grant holders, who let us know how much they value multi-year funding. The grants will help organisations to meet demand and plan for the future.

Our first funding round closed in December 2023, and we’re delighted to say that Family Friends, The Violence Intervention Project and the Lido Foundation have all been awarded £45,000, which will be split over three years.

Family Friends

We all need someone to turn to when times are tough – someone who will listen without judgement, offer advice and provide emotional support. Family Friends offers all this and more. Its befriending service helps parents to feel more confident, connect with local services and work to build a brighter future for themselves and their children. The charity also offers ‘Big Buddies’ to support children and teenagers with homework, hobbies and goals.

CEO Mel Christodoulou says, “The grant will enable us to employ a dedicated Family Connector focused on Hammersmith and Fulham, responding to a 36% increase in referrals this year. This ‘boots on the ground’ presence will allow us to extend our services and create a sustainable future in Hammersmith and Fulham.”

The Violence Intervention Project (The V.I.P)

When children and teenagers are aggressive, it’s often a sign of childhood trauma, such as abuse, neglect or bereavement.

The V.I.P works with young people to break the cycle of violence. It does this through ‘Urban Therapy’, which combines both therapeutic and practical support, to develop their psychological resilience and improve their socio-economic situations. This holistic approach is key to achieving long-term, sustainable changes within their cohort.

Funding & Operations Manager Jamie Crouch says, “Despite experiencing adversity and disadvantage, our clients have the potential to lead positive and fulfilling lives – and we act as the bridge between their past and their future.”

The V.I.P will use its grant to help establish a new youth committee, engage members of the public and contribute to staffing costs.

The Lido Foundation

Recent years have taken a huge toll on people’s finances, so it’s no surprise that the Lido Foundation experienced a three-fold increase in the number of people needing support last year. CEO Liban Muse says, “We have seen people in desperate situations who had to make difficult decisions to get food on the table for their families or to heat their homes.”

The charity helped 1400 people in 2022-23, many of whom are Black women with limited English and digital skills. The Lido Foundation offers practical support, such as helping people to apply for Universal Credit, negotiate with creditors and avoid homelessness.

HUC’s grant will help the Lido Foundation to cover its core costs, including contributing to the salary of the charity’s welfare adviser.

Find out more about applying for a grant

We will award up to three more Flexible 3 Year Grants in 2024. The exact date for applications is to be announced but is planned for June. This programme focuses on organisations that we already work with.

We also offer Community Grants. There are three opportunities to apply each year. If you’d like to be informed when the next round opens, please sign up to our newsletter.

Read More ...

November 2023 and February 2024 grantees

£240,000 to 28 community organisations!

Every year, Hammersmith United Charities provides £400,000 to local groups that are creating positive change in our area of benefit. Our most recent grant rounds in November 2023 and February 2024 saw unprecedented demand, with organisations requesting a total of over £640,000. The Committee responded by approving grants to 28 of those groups, ranging from £3,500 to £15,000 and totalling over £240,000.

The organisations receiving funding include Age UK Hammersmith and Fulham, who support 426 people over 50 years old; Bees & Refugees, who work with 100 people in H&F, most of whom are on a low-income; and Hammersmith Community Gardens Association (HCGA), who manage four community gardens in H+F.

How to apply for a HUC Community Grant

We hold three grant rounds each year and are particularly keen to hear from smaller, local organisations with a strong connection to their community and a working knowledge of the local area. Your project can be one-off or ongoing. What interests us most is the difference you’ll make to the local people most in need.

Please complete our Eligibility Quiz before applying, and then contact us at grants@hamunitedcharities.com to tell us about your project. We like to talk to applicants before you apply so that we can get a better understanding of what you’re doing and answer any questions you may have.

Find out more

Read More ...

CIC workshop success

“How do I convert a CIC to a charity?”, “Which banks accept CICs?”, “How do I employ people at my CIC?” 

These are just some of the questions that came up at the recent workshop we held for the leaders of Community Interest Companies (CICs). Many of the organisations that we work with are Community Interest Companies. Smaller CICs are often run by just one person, who has to manage everything from customer service to admin, accounting and marketing. Not surprisingly, many CIC leaders struggle to keep up with admin and reporting, which makes it difficult to apply for grants and other funding.  

So, when we asked local CICs whether they’d be interested in a workshop to share ideas and experiences, the answer was a resounding “yes”. To help ensure that as many CIC leaders as possible could attend the workshop, we decided to hold it online. We also worked with Dr Edwards & Bishop King’s (DEBK) and Peabody Trust to promote the event to relevant organisations.  

The Directory of Social Change recommended that we ask Leesa Harwood to run the event. Leesa has more than 30 years’ experience in the third sector and now runs her own consultancy company, so was the ideal presenter and facilitator. 

The two-hour workshop proved to be very informative, with plenty of lively discussions and sharing of experiences. 11 people attended. All either run a CIC or are considering setting one up. Conversations included finding directors with the right skills, whether (and how) to change from a CIC to a charity to attract more grant funding, and the challenges of employing people part-time.

Feedback was very positive, with one participant writing, “Thank you for organising today’s workshop. Very helpful and great to connect with other local organisations.” 

At Hammersmith United Charities, we often receive grant applications from community groups that are finding it difficult to keep up with CIC administration or which are struggling to create an appropriate organisational structure. We hope that workshops such as these will support local organisations to share information, access funding and, ultimately, become more sustainable so that they can continue their vital work for many years to come. 

If you’d like to discover more about what was shared at the workshop, you can access the files here. And, if you’re thinking of setting up your own CIC, Social Enterprise UK has lots of useful information and you can also download guides from the government’s website 

Read More ...
Leslie, Head of Housing

Meet our head of housing

Leslie Morson has been managing housing for over 20 years. He started his career in Hammersmith and has recently returned to the borough as our Head of Housing. Find out about his biggest vice and who he thinks is the best James Bond.

What do you like about Hammersmith?

It’s a really vibrant borough and there’s always a lot going on. I like the mix of communities – I live in Haringey which enjoys the same kind of mix. There’s also a lot of support in the borough for older people which is important.

What does your job involve?

I manage Hammersmith United Charities’ sheltered housing making sure that the buildings are safe and well maintained and also that the residents are being looked after and we can meet their needs. We help them with things such as completing forms and also provide a programme of social activities. We have two sheltered housing schemes just off Goldhawk Road – John Betts House on Rylett Road and Sycamore House on Sycamore Gardens. We are fortunate that we offer large flats decorated to a high standard. What is very special about our housing is the large communal gardens which both our schemes have and these gardens are enjoyed and highly valued by the residents. We are so lucky to have two gardeners who work with the residents to maintain them and keep them looking so beautiful.

You mentioned activities for the residents, what are those?

We have coffee mornings every Thursday. There are also exercise classes and game nights. Local specialists and community groups come in to talk to the residents and there are occasional trips, such as afternoon teas and outings to the seaside. In addition, the residents organise their own social events. For example, at John Betts House the residents arrange a film evening once a week. One of the things that I am looking forward to is to see how we could develop these activities even further. We’re starting to think about what we might do to celebrate the Queen’s Platinum Jubilee in June.

What’s the best thing about the job?

The people. We are a really nice staff team here – almost like a family. I’m starting to get to know the residents and they are great too.

In your free time what do you get up to?

Free time? What is that? I like travelling and I love to get away, even if it is just a short trip at weekends – we were in York the other weekend. My last big trip was going to China and I really like going to the Far East such as to Thailand and Cambodia.

What’s your biggest vice?

I think my wife would tell you it is wasting money, particularly buying electrical things and gadgets that I shouldn’t. I am what’s called an early adopter when it comes to technology and really like my gadgets. Last year I bought a new shower head which has a demister which somehow helps the environment, but I still haven’t installed it after about nine months!

Which do you prefer film or theatre?

That’s difficult. My wife trained as an actress and we often go to the theatre. I’ve been at least three times since the theatres opened up again. However, I do enjoy film as well and pay far too much money for streaming services such as Netflix and Sky. The last thing I saw at the cinema was the latest James Bond movie – I’m a huge James Bond fan. Daniel Craig is without doubt the best Bond we have ever had.

Eat out or take away?

I am a terrible cook, but my wife is an even worse cook than me and she’ll admit to that. I am the one who prepares Christmas dinner. Eat out would be the preference but my wife is a really fussy eater so I enjoy going out for a meal with friends rather than with my wife!

Reading a book or watching the tv?

I’m ashamed to say it but it’s going to have to be TV. I asked for a couple of books for Christmas which I got and I haven’t even picked them up yet. I used to be an avid reader, but I just don’t do it now. One of the books I got for Christmas was Vic Reeve’s autobiography but reading takes concentration and instead you can just stick the TV on and zone out.

Tea or coffee?

I’m not really a big tea or coffee drinker. I never have been. If I was to drink tea, I prefer a Darjeeling with a slice of lemon than a builder’s tea.

If someone is interested in Hammersmith United Charities’ housing, what should they do?

First, check our eligibility criteria. Then just give me a call on 07470 793 565, I would love to show you around.


Find out more
Read More ...
View More