Entrepreneurs’ club special – encouraging community trading in Redbridge- Sat 1st Oct 10.30am

Sophia Hubs, new Board, new journey, same community and business values

cropped-sh-logo-final-2014-e13972274445291.jpgWe will be electing our new Board at 10.15 on Saturday 1st October and you are very welcome to attend. To become a shareholder in our Company and to be able to vote, you’ll need to complete a basic membership form and pay £1, otherwise you can observe.

At 10.30ish founding Director Aidan Ward is speaker at the entrepreneurs’ club and will Aidanlead an inspiring, participatory and practical session about your business’ needs, community needs and co-designing services and values that work for all.  He will be drawing on the positive movement of the Commons and what this can mean for Redbridge.  We will look at business and community partnerships and collaboration.

Encouraging community trading – a Redbridge conversation

A wide range of people and businesses are being invited to this.  The usual ingredients of networking and peer support will be there.

The venue is at our new base: Room C, Redbridge Institute, Gaysham Avenue, Gants Hill, IG2 6TD.  To book your place click here.  For more information ros.southern@sophiahubs.com / 07707 460309

Please pass this invitation on.🙂

Sophia Hubs Ltd. Industrial and Provident Society number 32082

New Tech Ilford meet up – Weds 5 Oct 6pm, Ilford library

tech-ilfordFollowing the success of Enterprise Desk’s Tech Ilford event in June as part of London Technology Week it will be continuing to work with Graham Ogunleye from WHTV and Video, Dhireshan Gadiagellan from Gadgitech and Denzil Robinson on this regular networking event.

Wednesday 5th October, 6-9pm at Enterprise DeskEnterprise desk

Join them to hear first hand experience from Dhireshan about starting up and running a Tech business; try out our new 3D printer and meet other local Tech enthusiasts.

Book a place here

Sounds fun!

The results of our Redbridge Timebank focus groups and what we will do in response!

Redbridge Timebank update following focus groups…

  • The skills share events – more cosy, more structured please

The social aspect of the Timebank is important to you, you want a cosier venue (like the Flirt cafe or St Johns church) and many of you have a preference for the more structured Timebank skill-swap Redbridge Timebank logoevents.

We will: organise a mix of structured and freeflow activities at the next Timebank event. We will look for new venues and continue programming events, knowing how much you enjoy the community and social side of things. Also you can expect to see more themed workshops appearing in the future (e.g. fitness groups/ art classes and so forth).

  • There are some issues with payments and software that are making things difficult

Sometimes you have not been paid on time by other members and are not receiving emails when you contact other members through the website

Please keep in touch with the Timebank team members with any problems so that we can help. At the moment we administer the Timebank on Mondays only 12-4. You can always drop by to Redbridge Institute at that time. We are building up the team so that we can administer at other times of the week. For more pressing issues try emailing ros.southern@sophiahubs.com or ring the phone 07707 460309.

  • A more dynamic and inviting website please and help in posting offers and requests on line

Some of you do not yet know how to list offers and requests online and may not feel comfortable cropped-sh-logo-final-2014-e1397227444529.jpgtrading online. And the website isn’t too inviting!

This autumn, we will be re-merging with the ECHO platform, for the Timebanks in East London. When this happens, we will hold an induction event to refresh everyone on how to use our website, as well as introduce them to the ECHO system. As stated above, you are welcome to pop in before then, if you would like some 1:1 help on how to get started online. We are making enquiries with our web developer and ECHO’s tech people to see if we can make some cosmetic changes to our site before the platforms are merged. Otherwise, it will take a little while for this to happen.

  • More communication from us so that you know the Timebank is alive and kicking!

You want to be kept in touch about the Timebank stories, and news of new members and new posts

The team will send out text alerts every week or two, along with an email newsletter, approximately once a month, with links that you can click on to take you to the offers on the web page. Our new volunteer, Zeena, is upping our social media presence and will be posting these same alerts on our Facebook page. Please remember to “like” our page to get as much out of your Timebank community as possible!

Please will you get in touch with things you want us to plug or something you need some skilled help with or news of great trades you’ve done.

Some great feedback on the value of the Timebank to you:


  • “It’s been uplifting for me and brought profound benefits. I’ve met like-minded people, I feel more at ease in myself and am more self confident.”
  • “It’s given me a chance to practise my English, network and promote my activities.”
  • “I wanted to do something that wasn’t about money. It’s food for the soul that gives balance to the rat race.”
  • “My first timebank trade led to a month-long, paid job, so there has been a direct business benefit.Socially and emotionally it has also been amazing as I have made lovely new friends.”
  • “I did a creative writing session at a skills swap which then encouraged me to take a three-day poetry course which I really enjoyed.”

Thanks to Timebank member Sam Cowan who led on and facilitated these focus groups. Hope you enjoy spending your hours!

And here’s a very interesting and inspiring report from ECHO on the impact of it’s Timebank.


Redbridge community groups – business seminar for you tonight 6pm – support and networking

Help for Redbridge community groups and charities

Enterprising Redbridge session1 group 2The final business seminar of the Enterprising Redbridge project is tonight 6-8pm at Marjorie Collins Centre, 237 Grove Road, Chadwell Heath, RM6 4XF

Do come along, get some expert business advice, meet other community groups, share your tips and let’s see what we can do to make the sector more resilient and less dependent on funding!

For more info, ring 07707 460309 or look at the website http://enterprisingredbridge.org.uk/.

Groups that have participated: Welcome Centre, Redbridge Foodbank, Ubuntu Arts, 19 July sessionDisabled Asian Womens Network (DAWN), Marjorie Collins Centre, Redbridge Timebank, Redbridge Faith Forum, Liberty Credit Union,  Ask Academy, Ladies Unite, a luncheon club,  Ilford Transition Town, AWAAZ,  an Ilford church, upcycling project, Plantastic social enterprise and Mohamad who is setting up a social enterprise in Eritrea.

The Sophia Hubs Enterprising Redbridge project is an opportunity for reflection and challenges about changing mindsets from funding dependency to exploring different ways of running the services and raising income.


Asari St Hill – Redbridge masterclass on business basics for start ups Fri 23 Sept 1.30

We are delighted to welcome back Asari St Hill, Asari St Hill of ActionCOACH, as our speaker at our entrepreneurs’ club.

Our topic this month is developing your business and Asari wants to take you back to the basics – have you got it right?

  • Date: Friday 23 September
  • Venue: Enterprise Desk, 2nd floor, Redbridge Central Library (Ilford)
  • Time: 1.30 start, stay and network until 3.30

To see Asari in action at a previous entrepreneurs’ club, here he is🙂

Please pass it on. The more start-ups, the merrier. Also open to community groups and more established businesses.


Fab City Business Library seminar programme Oct – December: quality for a fiver

Practically daily – fabulous business seminars for a fiver by Bank station

About City Business Library

About City Business Library

The latest programme is out.🙂 You can sign up for it by emailing Vijeshrie.Vaghela@cityoflondon.gov.uk. cbl-business-events-october-december-2016.

Anyone want to join me for ‘business + social impact = economic growth’ on 5th October or  ‘get more out of small business Saturday and the Christmas season?’ 1st November?  Comment on this blog if you do.

Would be good to have some Redbridge events Social Saturday on 15th October for Small Business Saturday on 3rd December.

Anyone want to do a guest blog about either of these?


Redbridge Timebank focus group says share the great stories – first one Mario the electrician

We’ve been holding focus groups to see how we can take the Redbridge Timebank to the next Redbridge Timebank logolevel.

We’ve learned loads but first up is our new social media drive to share our good news stories.

zeena-parmarEnter new volunteer Zeena Parmar who will share stories on Facebook throughout the week and choose one a week to share on this blog.

This week – Mario the electrician…mario-palumbo-2

Mario’s daughter’s bedroom was decorated by Timebank member Brenda over a bank holiday weekend. He was delighted with this. Only thing was he didn’t have enough credit to ‘pay’ her.  So he put the word out and Stephanie booked him for a weekend’s work at her house.

Mario sorted my whole house out so nicely. He added plugs where needed and changed my fuse box as well some other work. Now it is so much easier for me to do everything and also it brought the house up to the required standards. Thank you Mario 👍👍👍 (Stephanie)

So now Mario can take advantage of more Timebank offers.🙂