**UPDATE: Things have changed – click here to read more about what we’re doing to keep our community together despite Coronavirus, and click here to read about our new online families programme **
We know that being part of a community is essential for a child and their family to truly thrive, and to become more resilient to challenges and barriers they may face. We are all people who have physical, emotional, spiritual and social needs. Our unique integrated Hub model has community at the centre.
We don’t view individuals or families as “clients”, we work alongside people through their journey to facilitate access to partnerships and local services and organisations. We strengthen support networks and community with a view to support families in a holistic, integrated way.
This includes our local council services in Lambeth and Southwark, local GPs and agencies, The Small Project, local Community Organisations Coin Street Community Builders, BOST amongst others, as well as local arts and uniform groups, such as Waterloo Community Theatre, Brownies and Scouts.
What We Do
Our Children & Families work weaves across our Hub. It includes focused work alongside our primary and secondary schools – Oasis Academy Johanna and Oasis Academy South Bank, and our early years children centre, Oasis Playspace.
Our work also includes family days, activities, events and volunteering across the year as well as a range of annual events such as our Christmas Fayre, Waterloo Carnival, and Summer at Oasis holiday provision.
The Hub provides touch points that meets local need, this includes the Waterloo Foodbank and Advice Centre offering specific support to families, the Waterloo Library service based in the Oasis Centre, as well as Oasis Farm Waterloo and the Hub Coffee House, providing a welcoming, affordable environment for families to come and spend time.
Within Oasis Church Waterloo specifically, we have vibrant children and family groups meeting during Sunday services, that nurture spiritual, emotional and intellectual growth, through creating safe spaces for fun and creative activities. Click here for more details.
Three core areas of our work include:
- Family support
We offer specific support to families facing hardship, challenge, struggling with physical or emotional health, and at risk of or experiencing acute crisis. This is tailored depending on the individual family and circumstance and involves a holistic approach of care
- Physical health and activity
Oasis Healthspace aims to turn the tide against childhood obesity and increase the flow of healthy options in local schools and the wider environment. It focuses on three areas of a family’s life:
- Improving physical health and nutrition, by reimaging an environment awash with healthier options.
- Becoming more physically active as a family, by engaging in more short bursts of energetic activity across the day.
- Influencing physical environments, to encourage healthier options as easier options across homes, schools and streets. It includes working with local retailers, markets and food businesses to develop a healthier and more affordable offer for local people.
- Promoting positive activity and wellbeing
In order to build a resilient community, we invite children and families to join us in creating positive activity that promotes wellbeing, build character, financial resilience, skills and relationships. We facilitate this through a range of after-school and weekend activities, such as baby groups, parent courses, adult learning, English classes, library use, holiday provision and community events.
The work is led by Felicity Maries, our Community & Family Manager, who works closely with Charlotte as she leads our Hullabaloo stay & play sessions, as well as a team focused on the health of our families under the banner of Oasis Healthspace. This team is made up of Carly, Hannah, Simon, Oznur and Maryan, and led by David.
Rebekah also works closely with Felicity in the area of Family Support, as our Advice Centre & Foodbank Manager, as does Stu Thomson, our Head of Youth services.
We take the safety and wellbeing of children seriously and ensure all workers with responsibility for children have DBS checks and receive regular appropriate training. You can view our safeguarding policy here.