Cambridge House logo

News Archives

Cambridge House added as Resource on UK Care Guide Website


We are proud to have been added as a useful resource on the UK Care Guide Website! Find us here: UK Care Guide is a site that has been created to help you with all aspects of your care ranging from calculating your care home costs or home care costs.  UK Care Guide also provide information on the different types of care available, for example assisted living as we all information around paying for care or other areas where costs may be incurred, such as power of attorney costs.



PLAY International launches its UK branch powered by Cambridge House


20th October 2016 / Press Release

PLAY International launches its UK branch powered by Cambridge House 

PLAY International launches its UK branch at the Beyond Sport Summit today. Powered by Cambridge House, PLAY International UK is the new brand under which initiatives such as the Playdagogy Program will be developed.


Playdagogy London: an innovative approach to promoting social inclusion

Sharing a common goal of challenging discrimination around disability, Cambridge House and PLAY International have collaborated over 3 years to promote inclusion in schools across London using the Playdagogy approach developed by PLAY International in countries such as Burundi, France and Kosovo. The programme enables teachers and coaches to use sport to foster inclusivity between disabled and non-disabled children.

Lisa Le Blond, PE Curriculum Leader at the Malmesbury Primary School, had the chance to be part of one of the Playdagogy training last January: “It is no wonder that the Playdagogy training is worth 6 CPD points! My colleagues and I all agree that the Playdagogy training was the most effective and enjoyable CPD that we have been on”.
The impact of the project was evaluated by academics from Leeds and Loughborough Universities. They found that 83% of participating children improved their comprehension of equality and equity and 100% increased their understanding of the social and physical barriers created by exclusion and discrimination. The Playdagogy programme also earned official certification from SkillsActive, the UK Sector Skills Council for Active Leisure, Learning and Well-being.

Learn more about the Playdagogy UK programme in this interview with Leo Schwartz, Playdagogy UK Coordinator:

Key figures
182 educators were trained at the Playdagogy programme
28 organisations are implementing the programme
1700 children benefited

Playdagogy programme shortlisted for Sports and Social Integration Award – 2016 Beyond Sport Awards

PLAY International’s Playdagogy programme has been nominated for the 2016 Beyond Sport “Sports and Social Integration’ award category! The Beyond Sport Summit & Awards is the largest international sport for social change event in the world. Since 2009, Beyond Sport Awards have been awarded to the best projects in the field of sports education and social development. This success follows PLAY International’s previous achievement in winning the 2014 Beyond Sport ‘Sports and Conflict Resolution Award’ for its Sport4Youth programme (Kosovo).


Giulia Tavernari – Cambridge House / E: / T: 0207 358 2069 / M: 07463436821
Antoine Biard – PLAY International / E: / M: 0682222773



Stand-Up Celebrate Award with Grow Wild at Kew Gardens


Stand-Up celebrated the National Lottery Award with Grow Wild at Kew Gardens this week. One of the highlights was meeting resident artist Rachel Gadsden at The Hive. Have a look at the stunning pieces they produced together: (Photos by Ania Shrimpton Photography)

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

Back home, Stand-Up Southwark with the support of Grow Wild London have been hard at work taking care for the community garden. Here are some of their thoughts on the project:

“Before, the thought of gardening was out of our comfort zone. We’re from the ‘ends’, it’s not seen as a male, young thing to do. We didn’t even think public gardens were accessible to people like us. But we’ve now visited Hampton Court Flower Show and the Sky Garden at the Shard, and will be going to Kew Gardens with Grow Wild. One of us even went to a seminar on gardening, which talked about abstract thinking, creativity and influencing people.”

“We wanted to work on a project that gave us a connection to the community, get us off our phones and participate in something different. If young people help construct their local community, they care more and are less likely to ruin it. It will be a place for people to come to, to sit on the benches in peace. It will look good, really pleasant to look at. The final result will be beautiful. It will also get the community understanding fresh stuff. The vegetables and herbs we’re planting can help sustain and feed the community.”

“Coming from a council estate, I don’t have a garden. Seeing them, like at the Hampton Court flower show, it’s now one of the things I want when I’m older. It’s like music, inspiration.” (Liam, 19)
“I really appreciated the opportunity Grow Wild gave me to go to the opening of the garden at the Shard. It’s a very prestigious building, it’s not every day that a young person like me gets to go there and meet the head of the Shard. It was very exciting to see the official opening and cutting of the ribbon. Plus I got to be on London Live and Japanese TV!!” (Joash, 23)

“The project has taught us a lot. We’re doing things we didn’t think possible. We didn’t know about any of it, but Grow Wild told us about the importance of wild flowers. They are important for the ecosystem because they produce oxygen and attract bees to pollenate more flowers. There’s a real variety of seeds and flowers, such as red and white campion, and they keep the ground fertile with nutrients.”

“Claire Vokins is a professional gardener and has volunteered a lot of time with us, she has been brilliant. She has educated us and we’ve realised that through teamwork we can achieve a lot. The skills we are learning can be applied to other things in life. It shows commitment, drive, and a ‘can do’ attitude.”

“We’ve learnt to integrate with people of different ages and abilities, because we’re working on the project with ‘19+’, the Cambridge House art group for adults with learning disabilities. A lot of us have found painting the fence and planters therapeutic and relaxing. We’re going to add sensory stuff to the garden, for people with learning disabilities to enjoy.”

“We’re going to connect our official opening of the Stand-Up Garden to the empowerment sessions we do. We can use the project for the music some of us make, because we can express new feelings related to gardening. We’re outside of our normal environment, so we’ll come up with new lyrics and emotions, it will be creative inspiration. The opening event will show people that anyone can garden, it’s a good exercise for teamwork. The garden will always change, like us. It’s a ‘forever’ project.”

To Keep up with the project visit their website:

Cambridge House attends International Federation of Settlements Conference 2016

Cambridge House attended the International Conference of Settlements and Neighbourhood Centres 2016 at the Urania Convention Centre in Berlin, Germany last month.

The International Federation of Settlements is an association of national, regional and local organizations working to strengthen communities around the world. Its mission is to build an inclusive global community by empowering, inspiring and connecting people who are working locally for social justice. IFS’ more than 10,000 members include multi-purpose, community-based organizations all over the globe, from North America and Europe to South America and Asia.’

As one of the oldest settlements in the world, Cambridge House is a long standing member of the of the IFS. To read more about our history as part of the international Settlement Movement you can click here.

The Conference theme this year was, On the Move – At Home in the World. Participants from around the globe shared experiences, practical approaches and best-practice examples in lectures, workshops and site visits in the area of refugees and migration.

Giulia Tavernari, Cambridge House’s representative at the conference, said:

It was inspiring and encouraging to see that all of these organisations from across the world working towards social justice and a more inclusive world. It’ll be fascinating to see how the commitments made at IFS ’16 will pan out across all the different member organisations in their home countries. I look forward to seeing where we all are in 2018!

All in all, it was encouraging to see the numerous possibilities that exist for developing programs and services that support new and old migrants and create inclusive and welcoming communities even in crisis situations. We came away having learnt a lot from each other and feeling empowered to maintain our ongoing commitment to social justice across the world.

Following the conference, the IFS committed to:

  • The language we use matters – being thoughtful to avoid dehumanising, exclusionary words is important. We should instead talk about others as neighbours.
  • We should engage in two way work:
    • We need to respond to pressing human suffering
    • but also work with the current residents and support and tackle issues such as poverty, racism, disempowerment. We should also tackle issues of xenophobia head on.
  • While issues are extremely complex and wide ranging as ISF we are posed to deal with complexity because we are complex and multifaceted. We are experienced in working in an environment where political systems create obstacles to equality for example.
  • Our work should produce a sense of belonging and hope.

We are looking forward to the next IFS meeting in Helsinki!

Check out this video to learn more:

Chief Executive Karin Woodley attends the GSEF Conference in Montreal

global social economy forum 2016, karin woodley, Cambridge House international work, GSEF 20165On September 7–9 2016 our Chief Executive, Karin Woodley, attended the Global Social Economy Forum in Montréal, Canada.

The GSEF is an international association of local governments and civil society committed to the social and solidarity economy (SSE). The central theme of the conference was collaboration between local governments and organizations of the social and solidarity economy (SSE) for the development of cities. Seminars, workshops and site visits focused on how to ensure decent quality of life and access to basic needs for all against a backdrop of growing income inequality, discrimination and social exclusion in our cities around the world.

Check out a selection of Karin’s thoughts on the Conference:





















The following resolutions were made at the GSEF Conference:

1. Recognize the central role of SSE organizations to overcome the current challenges and to promote a renewed participatory democracy

2. Multiply participatory governance spaces

3. Build an inclusive movement for all men and women of all ages and origins.

4. Build public-private-community partnerships to meet the needs and aspirations of our communities

5. Share our visions, experiences and achievements to promote social innovation, including through CITIES, a strategic partner of GSEF 6. Recognize and support youth as important actors for the future of the SSE movement.

To see the full declaration click here.

Playdagogy Shortlisted for Social Innovation Award – Beyond Sport Awards 2016

We’re thrilled to announce that our Playdagoy programme, working in parternship with PLAY International, has been shortlisted for the Beyond Sport Social Innovation Award 2016! 24/8/2016

Beyond Sport, Playdagogy, Social Innovation Award, Social Innovation 2016, PL4Y International UK, Sports San Frontiers, Playdagogy UK, Playdagogy evidence, Playdagogy review, Playdagogy good,A huge congratulations to our Playdagogy team, who have worked with 28 organisations, 128 educators, and reached more than 1,700 children over the last year. Through their hard work, we’re harnessing the transformative and unifying power of sport to tackle the root causes of social injustice.

We know that children who play together learn to work together and to accept and respect each other’s different abilities. Playdagogy uses an evidence-based methodology to engage children creatively in recognising, understanding and addressing social issues through participation in sport.

By inserting educational messages into sporting activities, Playdagogy teaches children about challenges related to different social issues, using experiential learning and symbolic interaction. This enables them to explore ways to overcome these issues by critically reflecting on their environment, social attitudes, behaviour and knowledge.

We provide training and resources to teachers, sports coaches and community organisations interested in using Playdagogy session in their school, sports club or youth centre

Check out this video to see how we work with young people around disability and how to dismantle prejudice and tackle discrimination.

Playdagogy takes centre stage at international sports event, The Playground, in Tourcoing, France

Cambridge House joined Pl4y International on 7-8 June 2016 for the second edition of Playground at Kipstadium in Tourcoing, France.

Organised by our European partners, PLAY International, The Playground saw 400 hundred children and 200 educators take part in sports, educational activities and events on disability, nutrition and social innovation in sports.

We sent our Playdagogy team out to take part, where they lead training workshops on how to best evaluate the impact of projects and on our approach to tackling hate crime through sports and play.

Check out this video to see the wonderful time we all had at Playground. Look out for our fantastic (and now, sadly, departed) Perrine at 0.58 demonstrating her multiple talents with translation and delivery!

Shard Sky Garden TV Appearance for Stand-Up Southwark Graduates

Three of our fabulous Stand-Up Southwark graduates represented our community garden project, Stand-Up Garden, at the glamorous launch of Europe’s highest garden at The Shard! 07/06/2016

Shard, Sky Garden, Grow Wild, Cambridge House, Stand-Up Southwark, gardening, youth work, gardening project, SOuthwark Consummate professionals that they are, our young graduates braved early-morning wind and rain take part in filming on the top floor of The Shard and were interviewed by London Live! In partnership with Grow Wild, who fund our Stand-Up Garden project, the event helped raise awareness of the importance of protecting the UK’s wild flowers. The event also featured Claudia Winklemann, of Strictly Come Dancing, who officially opened Europe’s highest garden, 800ft above London on the viewing deck of The Shard.

Check them out here:

Our three graduates are also project leads on our community gardening project, our Stand-Up Garden, where they are managing a summer-long regeneration project for Cambridge House’s neglected front garden. Supported by Grow Wild, the UK’s largest wildflower campaign, the project will transform our garden into an inclusive wildflower and edible garden. The project brings together our youth programme, Stand-Up, and 19Plus, our arts and social group for adults with a learning disability. Together they will design and lead the transformation of the garden, creating mosaics and an inclusive sensory zone for users with learning and/or other disabilities.

Cambridge House Appoints New Law Centre Manager, Pamela Robotham

community hub, building, southwark, lambeth, lewisham, deprivation, multiple, specialistWe are pleased to announce that Pamela Robotham has been appointed the new Law Centre Manager. She took up post on Monday 23rd May.

Pamela was educated in Southwark and has lived locally for over 30 years. Pamela has worked as a housing solicitor at Cambridge House for nearly 4 years and knows how we, Southwark and Lambeth Council and Lambeth County Court – as well as the rest of the local environment – all work.  Until relatively recently, she was a trustee of Southwark Law Centre.

Pamela is an experienced solicitor with nearly 20 years Post Qualification Experience and extensive experience of Legal Aid.   She trained and worked for 10 years in private practice at the respected firm of Glazer Delmar solicitors, and has a wealth of experience across the not for profit sector, including managing the College of Law Legal Advice Centre.  She has worked as a University lecturer teaching Housing law and is an experienced trainer, having provided legal training and facilitated legal capacity building for the Law Societies of Zambia, Uganda, Tanzania and the Eastern Caribbean. She also helped to develop the civil litigation training course for the Law School of Tanzania.

Pamela has also worked with social housing providers and other housing projects including Deptford Housing Aid Centre and ran a housing project for young people with Sickle Cell Anaemia for OSCAR Housing Project .

We have also fairly recently appointed two experienced housing solicitors: Gurminder Birdi – previously with Moss & Co, and Serdar Celebi who was previously with Foster and Foster solicitors – both well-known legal aid housing firms.

Chief Executive Karin Woodley Wins Lifetime Achiever Award at Excellence in Diversity Awards

Cambridge House Chief Executive Karin Woodley wins Lifetime Achiever Award at Excellence in Diversity Awards 2016 for contribution to social justice and fighting inequality 13/05/2016

Karin Woodley

Karin Woodley, Chief Executive of Cambridge House, was awarded the Lifetime Achiever Award at the 2016 Excellence in Diversity Awards last week. Karin was recognised for her extraordinary contribution to the diversity and equality movement over a leadership career spanning 30 years.

The Excellence in Diversity Awards celebrate organisations and individuals that excel in their commitment to equality and inclusion across all strands of diversity.

The Lifetime Achiever Award honours an individual who has devoted a major portion of their professional life to enhancing the practice of equality and diversity, making significant, innovative, and cumulatively outstanding contributions to the cause.

The awards committee recognised that Karin’s passion, experience, and innovative energy has driven a range of organisations working to broaden diversity and increase equality. Karin was also commended for inspirational and creative leadership, humour and care for others, along with her with strong political acumen, a dedication to human rights and energetic persistence.  She has driven a number of significant changes at a community and statutory level in the arts, education, community empowerment, social action, and criminal justice sectors and she received the award to a standing ovation.

Karin’s contribution to Arts Diversity and Equality

During the 1980’s Karin’s voluntary and professional roles helped to significantly:

  • Dismantle the barriers to arts participation by black Asian and minority ethnic (BAME) artists
  • Support mainstream arts organisations and government agencies to develop ‘Ethnic Arts’ policies
  • Tackle the multiple exclusions faced by BAME people who are disabled and/or are LGBT

As a young campaigner, Karin founded the Haringey Black Arts Forum, Haringey Disabled Artists Group and the Association of London Black Artists; chaired the West Midlands Ethnic Minorities Arts Service; was a Director of the Institute of Race Relations; and a founder and member of the Arts Council England’s Black Disabled Artists Working Group. She worked to ensure that ‘non-western artists’ were given a voice and were able to work constructively with local, regional and national arts associations to develop policies and practices that reflected the rich diversity of cultural traditions in the UK.

Having been invited by Jeremy Isaacs to advise the Royal Opera House’s education committee on engagement and participation in 1987, Karin lobbied the ROH to devise the schools open week, enabling charities and schools, disabled groups and BAME organisations from areas of high deprivation free access to ROH performances.

Invited by Camden Council to help them recruit London’s first ‘Ethnic Arts Officer’, Karin went on to establish an independent professional forum that successfully supported the appointment of ethnic arts officers in all the London Boroughs, and provided staff in these roles with a support and policy development network.

In 1986, the Labour Party asked Karin to convene an Ethnic Arts Group to advise them on the development of their policies for arts and culture. Karin brought together a group of arts practitioners who went on to work with the 1st BAME MPs in 1987 (Bernie Grant, Keith Vaz, Diane Abbott and Paul Boateng), as well as the SDP and the Conservative Party.

In 1986, over and above her work as Chief Executive of the Minorities Arts Advisory Service, as founder and Chair of the charity Arts Media Group Karin raised the funding that enabled publication of Black Arts in London and Disability Arts in London. Today, archives of these bi-monthly arts listings magazines provide an important record of the cultural events and activities that shaped the cultural profile of London during the latter part of the 20th century.

Karin’s contribution to Diversity and Equality in the Criminal Justice System

In 2000, Karin became the founding chair of the Royal Borough of Kensington and Chelsea Police’s first Independent Advisory Group on Race (2000-2005). Her dynamic leadership and mediation skills helped to build bridges between the Black community and the police.

This success in Kensington Chelsea led to the Home Offices in England and Wales engaging her to delivery anti-racist and partnership training.

Karin’s contribution to Diversity and Equality in Education

Karin’s visionary and inspiring leadership of the Tabernacle Centre was acknowledged by her being awarded the 2004 London Development Agency award for Black Business Excellence, Achievement & Mentoring; the 2002 highest achieving Adult Learning Inspectorate report nationally; and the 2001 European Social Fund /NIACE New Learning Opportunities Award in the category Young BME Adult Learners.

Karin was appointed as the Stephen Lawrence Charitable Trust’s first professional Chief Executive in 2005. During the subsequent four years she raised £15 million in grants and donations so that the organisation could begin to achieve its mission to tackle the under-representation of BAME people in the architectural and built environment professions.

Karin’s tenacious pursuit of equality and diversity has included inspirational work on an international level:

  • In 1992 and 1993 in the lead-up to South Africa’s first open general election in 1994; Karin joined a team of University of Amsterdam sponsored lecturers who were willing to risk working with illegal arts unions in Johannesburg to prepare black freedom fighters for roles in local, regional and national government.
  • In 2001, she was an international visiting lecturer in arts and humanities at Dillard University, an historically black university in New Orleans.
  • In 2013, she led a team of trainers providing citizenship and diversity training in Siberia for 13 to 16 years olds, funded by the EU.

Karin continues to devote herself, beyond the call of duty, to diversity, inclusion and social justice. In addition to her work as Chief Executive of Cambridge House, Karin holds the following positions:

  • Council Member of the Economic and Social Research Council
  • Vice Chair of Community Southwark
  • Member of the Global Social Economy Forum
  • Trustee of Locality (an umbrella organisation for building-based community organisations)
  • Fellow of the British American Project
  • Fellow of the Royal Society of Arts
  • Vice Chair of London South Bank University’s Student Union