Hello, London! SINGA launches first Chapter in Hackney & Tower Hamlets

Welcome to SINGASINGA UK is 'open for business' in London

After more than a year of development, conversations and planning, we couldn't be more excited to announce that SINGA UK is ready to open its doors with the creation of our first local Chapter in Hackney & Tower Hamlets, East London!

It's all happening out East

We've (quietly) begun already with a monthly series of lunchtime writing workshops in the beautiful Libreria bookshop in East London. SINGA Stories is run by novelist and essayist Dina Nayeri and our next one is Monday 14 May - why not come along? These sessions are unlocking powerful stories and it will be fascinating to see how they emerge in the coming months. 

Some of our first activities will include SINGA Living Room - where a member of the SINGA community will host a live music and pot-luck food gathering (with some storytelling on the side) … in their very own (you guessed it) living room! We held our first one recently in Bethnal Green and will be announcing our next one soon. 

We are also hosting a new series of gatherings starting Monday 23 April at Ziferblat which we call our SINGA Commons – it's an open invitation for anyone to come along and discover ways in which you can play a more active role in your local community -- as well as connect with others through the things you love and want to learn. The spirit of SINGA in action! Save the date :) 

Finally, SINGA Blabla language cafe is coming up to the area as well! Come along to our first session of these fortnightly for the next few months on Monday 30 April at Rivington Mix. You will have the chance to practice new languages, share ideas and get to know new people!

Want to get involved?

Head over to this link for details on the many ways you can play a part, including key volunteer roles within our Hackney & Tower Hamlets team. These are open to people from all walks of life – people just like you – no matter what your background or level of experience. It’s an exciting time to join and be part of our ambitious plans to bring SINGA to town. 

You can sign up to our mailing list and join our Facebook group to stay in the loop as updates are released. 

This is all great… but will SINGA just be a Hackney/London thing? 

In the last blog we talked about the decision to play to our strengths and make SINGA as local as possible in one part of London, then build out from there. There are more than half a million people living Hackney & Tower Hamlets alone, as well as huge numbers of people who work and visit every day. Alongside the hundreds of organisations doing amazing community work already, there is much to learn and many opportunities to explore. 

But we are determined to extend the reach of SINGA across the capital and beyond and are already talking to organisers in other parts of London and the UK. In the summer SINGA's global team will be launching a major new digital platform to help support and bring together all the work that is happening on the ground across SINGA's multiple communities, meaning more opportunities to connect through SINGA and help the network grow (more on that later).  

Ultimately where we go next will be determined by the interest shown by local communities in having us, and the resources and funding available to make it possible. So if you're keen to see SINGA happen in your part of London or the UK and think you can help, we'd love to hear from you

The spirit of SINGA

Volunteer (picture by David Monteith-Hodge)

As SINGA continues to grow one thing which remains as fundamental as ever is the idea that anyone can be a creator, a teacher or a learner, no matter the journey that first brings them into our space.

We all carry labels, often those given to us because of the way we appear or the circumstances we might find ourselves in - but at SINGA we believe very clearly that how we are labelled or defined should be entirely up to us. Everyone should be offered the same opportunities, to be a leader or to learn; to participate or to create.   

It's this 'SINGAness' which we’re the most proud of and it will be at the heart of everything we do. 

> Find out how to get involved here !



With thanks to David Monteith-Hodge for his gorgeous pics throughout.