In her regular column on life at The Mill, Helen Bigham makes connections with the community
No place or person is perfect, there’s always room for improvement. Earth-shattering news I know!
I’ve got the choice to do the best I can to change the things I don’t like about where I live or how I act. That goes hand-in-hand with a wider social responsibility in which I have an obligation to act and behave in a way that is for the benefit of society at large. Everybody will interpret this in their own way but for me a concern for the wellbeing of others as well as myself is fundamental.
This belief influenced me to join the steering group for Waltham Forest Connected (WFC). This partnership currently led by the council was launched in March 2017 with the aim to help bring businesses, the voluntary sector, and community groups in Waltham Forest together to network, share ideas to keep afloat, and promote growth in our borough. Their mandate is to support the development of Waltham Forest which in turn will have a beneficial effect on local people.
The chair is Riley Ramone from TicketLab; a local ticketing platform that is completely free for event organisers to set up and sell tickets and, for those buying tickets, their booking fees are really low. In the spirit of social responsibility they’re very helpful in supporting local charities and voluntary organisations with events.
Originally I got to know Riley at The Mill community centre. He’s one of our volunteers and has been instrumental in developing our website. Volunteers have lots of different reasons for getting involved but his reason is one of my favourites: “As I work from home most other days, volunteering at The Mill has been a fantastic way to meet new people and socialise with people who aren’t my cat.”
Another excuse to get away from his pet are the quarterly WFC meetings. In celebration of Technology Week the summer meeting covered broadband voucher schemes and co-working spaces. The next get-together will be on Wednesday 26th September and the emphasis will be on culture, unveiling some of the plans and activities in 2019 as Waltham Forest becomes the first-ever London Borough of Culture.
We’ve had some great feedback from attendees coming to the meetings. But to move forward we welcome suggestions, as Venus Williams states: “I’m always in search for perfection. If it’s not perfect, I’m back to the drawing board.”
To find out more about Waltham Forest Connected: