Head of Young People’s Work Jan Sharkey-Dodds celebrates the summer and tells us how the Olympics are making things round here a bit different…
Summer is here at last, eh?
Here in Stratford I’ve noticed a huge swell in the amount of people just milling around. And lots wearing purple/orange nylon shirts- are they the ones Stella MacCartney designed? I won’t be rushing out to buy one.
To avoid the hot, smelly tubes I’ve decided to walk to work. It usually takes about 45 minutes. This morning it took about an hour. I turned into roads that BO (before-Olympics) I often walked down. Not today. I was stopped by , albeit very friendly, security men who put me through the Spanish Inquisition. I didn’t have the right pass, so had to take a detour.
I arrived at work hot, late and a bit smelly.
I guess this is what the Olympics means for us in our daily lives – a bit of inconvenience.
I am going to three events – Hockey, Handball (what is that?) and some athletic thingy. I am trying to whip up some enthusiasm , but struggling. Although the Olympic spirit is very much bringing together my local community. At the weekend neighbours all met at the torch relay and had a music/picnic festival in a local park. Now, that was good, cheap fun.
Many staff here will be working remotely from home over the Olympic period. Because I’m local, I can get in to work. I need to knuckle down to getting some funding in. Although we have brilliant support from Newham, Arts Council , trusts/foundations and kind individuals- we do have a shortfall. Our vision is ambitious and the needs of our local young people have to be met.
Headlines for the year ahead are developing new talent and working closely with schools.
Whatever your Olympic plans are, I do hope you are inspired.
If you are in Stratford, pop in to see us and give me a break from funding application forms… or you can do some for me.