Category: Guardian stories

20 December 2021 | Guardian stories, Volunteering

Volunteer to spread festive cheer: how our guardians will be supporting vulnerable members of the community this winter

With the arrival of the holiday season it can be easy to forget that for many, the winter period spells isolation and hardship. But there are plenty of ways in which you can help to share joy with others over the coming months. We sat down with some of our guardians to find out how they’ll be volunteering to combat loneliness and poverty, and to get some ideas on how we can all get involved to spread festive cheer.

30 November 2021 | Guardian stories, Local area guides

Move to High Wycombe: a vibrant market town surrounded by the beauty of the Chiltern Hills

Our self-contained flats in the Buckinghamshire market town of High Wycombe are one stop away from the picturesque Chiltern Hills and just 45 minutes from central London. From a 700 year old market to the best outdoor swimming spot, discover our top picks in the area and how Dot Dot Dot guardian, Jerry, gained his independence through living alone in his cosy 1-bed flat.

Forming meaningful connections in Oxford: Mori and Oxford Community Action

Through their regular volunteering, Oxford guardian, Mori, is helping to redistribute food and spread the word about the work of Oxford Community Action in their local community and further afield. We caught up with them to find out how the organisation supports Black, Asian and Minority Ethnic (BAME) communities ‘to tackle and overcome barriers created by structural inequalities’ through grassroots activities and community engagement.

Finding a sense of community in north west London: Farah and The Granville

Queen’s Park guardian, Farah, found a renewed sense of community in her hometown of north west London when she started volunteering for The Granville last year. The centre delivers food parcels to the local community and provides a multi-purpose space for people to come together.

Guardianship and social impact in east London with Custom House Civic Community Hub

Dot Dot Dot guardians in east London have been supporting the community-building efforts created by Civic, an organisation working to re-imagine community high streets for the benefit of local residents. We explore the inventive ways our guardians have set out to give a new lease of life to a set of empty retail spaces by  developing them into a vibrant community-led centre. 

Helping his community to borrow instead of buy: Allan Smith and SHARE Oxford

Oxford guardian, Allan, is helping members of his community to prevent waste with SHARE. The organisation is on a mission to discourage a culture of waste by enabling people to borrow items instead of buy. Founder of SHARE, Maurice, explains how volunteers like Allan have enabled the organisation to grow, and build a strong community of like-minded people. Volunteers help to educate others on the importance of reducing the need for unnecessary production and consumption.

Spotlight on: Giles Morten – transforming his property guardian home on a budget

For Giles, property guardianship represents much more than simply inexpensive housing. For him, it’s a chance to establish his independence,  channel his creativity and passion for interior design, and the platform he needs to kickstart life after university. We spoke to Giles about how he transformed his empty flat into a home that represents his artistic personality.

Spotlight on: Veema Sawmynaden – creating meaningful impact through her digital magazine, Dark Hues

Veema had always been looking for ways that she could create a meaningful impact to society, but wanted to do so in a creative way to represent what she wanted to see in the world. So after attending a workshop around colourism, she developed the idea for a digital magazine to inspire conversations and raise awareness around the subject. Now, Dark Hues is a fast-growing platform for dark skin people of colour to share their experiences.

Spotlight on: Maria Stoica – finding her feet in London at Oasis City Farm

Maria Stoica

When she moved to London from rural Romania, the stark contrast between city and countryside was for Maria, unsettling. But after becoming a Dot Dot Dot guardian in 2016, she began searching for a volunteering opportunity that could help her maintain a connection with the countryside. It also meant Maria was helping to make London a greener and more sustainable city for all.

Spotlight on: Serkan – saving for a mortgage with property guardianship

When Serkan joined our thriving community of guardians in central London, he had initially only been thinking of his short commute to work. But with the financial stability that came with monthly living costs being significantly lower than local market rates, Serkan was able to begin saving money immediately. After his partner Klaara also became a property guardian in late 2019, their savings pot steadily increased, and in March 2020 they were searching for their dream home to buy outside of London.

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