There's a lot going on at Railway Gardens and there's a lot going on in Splott too! What if it was easier to find the right opportunity, support, or service for you, on site, locally, or further afield? How could a little extra support help you to get involved in and shape your community?
Back in November we shared the good news that – with the support of Footwork – we are now able to bring a Community Navigator onto the team at Railway Gardens to offer additional support to people involved in the project. We are now delighted to introduce Sheila Littleboy who has started in this role this month! Sheila first became involved with Railway Gardens as a volunteer and many of you will already have received a warm welcome from her when visiting Natter with Neighbours.
An important part of Sheila’s role is to help identify the best activities at the Gardens for you or someone you support, whether you’re looking to socialise, develop new skills, make new friends or build your confidence. This could include…
- Exploring possible volunteering roles with you and supporting you to begin volunteering, for example by matching you with a volunteer buddy or helping you to apply to volunteer elsewhere.
- Helping you to explore other support you might find useful outside of the Railway Gardens project; locally, across the city, or online.
- Assisting with things like form filling and referrals to make use of other services.
- And offering a friendly, familiar face to build confidence when coming along to new activities.
If this sounds useful then you can pop in to chat with Sheila at…
- Natter with Neighbours, every Wednesday from 10:30am – 12pm
- Our new Community Kitchen Table drop in, every Thursday, 2 – 4pm, and the last Saturday of each month, 10am – 12pm.
At both sessions you’ll receive a friendly welcome, free hot drinks (and biscuits of course) as well as support to get involved in the community, help to find out about local services, or simply some time to chat over a cuppa.
Here's Sheila to introduce herself in her own words...
“Hello. I’m Sheila and I have lived locally, with my husband, for nearly thirty years. We have two daughters and all of us have enjoyed getting involved at Railway Gardens. Since the garden opened I have volunteered in the gardening team and supporting Natter with Neighbours.
I have had a very varied working life including being self employed for 17 years and, since 2019, working in the charitable sector. What all my jobs have had in common is an enjoyment of communicating and connecting with people. When I was self employed I delivered many workshops and training sessions including stress management and relaxation, baby massage and yoga and antenatal education.
I frequently bump into people I met whilst doing this work, including at Railway Gardens! Over the last couple of years I have worked in Cardiff in mental health and wellbeing roles and spent a year at Dyffryn Gardens, in the Vale, working in a volunteering and community engagement role. I am delighted and excited to be joining the Green Squirrel team.”
This new role has been made possible through the generous support of Footwork – a charity on a mission to build resilient communities that value local experience and encourage people’s freedom to act and to collaborate in shaping the places where they live. They believe that:
“living your life well means feeling you belong within a place; having strong relationships with the people around you; and being able to contribute to shaping the place where you live.”
We couldn’t agree more! So we are absolutely honoured that we have been chosen to receive Footwork’s support through their People and Place Fund alongside nine other exciting projects across the UK. This fund provides funding and strategic support to local social innovators – highly motivated individuals and groups who have identified local problems within their community and the solutions to tackle them. Thank you Footwork for believing and trusting in the Splott and Adamsdown community.