Bags of Taste Budget Cooking Course

Bags of Taste Budget Cooking Course
Fridays 12.00-2.30, 2-23rd March at the Salvation Army,
434 Forest  Road, Walthamstow, E17 4PY

“Bags of Taste” is a local project helping people increase access to healthy foods and the benefits of healthy meals every day. Our delicious recipes are sourced from around the world and are all designed to cost less than £1.00 per head.

At the end of every lesson you can buy bags of ingredients at a cost of £3.00 each, with enough food included for four meals, so you can try cooking it again (and again) at home. Each lesson includes a food demonstration, practical hands on learning to prepare the recipes and opportunity to take part in a free community lunch.
To register text /call 079 14 80 35 30

Find us at:
See a short video about the programme.

People of Purpose Craft Workshops

Wood Street, Walthamstow
People of Purpose (POP) have a doing space in Walthamstow, providing craft  workshops and 1.2.1 tutorials for knitting, crochet and sewing skills as well as a community-based herbalist. Activities include:

  • Wednesday afternoons – knitting and crochet club with teaching support
  • Thursdays –  community herbalist who produces locally sourced herbal treatments. She will be running workshops and learning sessions to introduce practices of herbal medicine and how to cultivate health in your home and garden
  • Coming soon – Pattern cutting workshops delivered by a fashion designer. Workshops will be for both adults and children

In addition, People of Purpose would love to run an ESOL group and has space in its calendar for this. At present 2 ESOL students are using the space for their own enterprise.

For further information on how to get involved
See our Instagram page: popeastlondon

People of Purpose, Craft Workshops
2 Georgian Village, 100A Wood Street, Walthamstow,  E17 3HX

Hearing from an ESOL tutor

Ortrun Peyn runs the weekly English conversation class at WMAG, Fridays 10 – 12:30, Salvation Army, Forest Road, E17 4PY

The WMAG runs a weekly English class for women who speak no or very little English. The aim is to equip the students with the language skills and confidence that are required to deal with everyday situations: making an appointment at their GP’s, shopping, talking to their children’s teacher, reporting a problem to the police, filling in forms for a library ticket or a season ticket, etc. Fun, enjoyment and the social aspect of meeting new people in a cheerful and supportive environment are an essential ingredient of these English classes.

Even though some of our women students are bi-lingual (e.g., in Somali and Arabic), many of them have had very few educational opportunities, leaving them with correspondingly poor literacy and study skills. Most of our women learners have busy lives, looking after their families and their homes. So the weekly English class has to be a worthwhile investment of their time. The offer of having a break during our two-hour lesson was firmly rejected. Not surprisingly, our students are extremely keen to learn and very aware that better English will improve their ability to cope with everyday problems and to understand the world around them.

Building up sufficient vocabulary alone takes time, especially when the teacher has no knowledge of her students’ native language(s).  Thank heavens for Google with its “Images” tab and for Google Translate. Students with good literacy skills in their native language should, ideally, have access to a quality dictionary. But who can afford the price of £30 or more?

One of the biggest challenges the students face is an understanding of the fact that successful communication is based on the use of correctly structured sentences. The bad habit of replying to questions or attempting to explain things by haphazardly stringing together a few nouns can be hard to break. Furthermore, the ability to describe a situation (or to tell a story) requires some understanding of what a verb is and the skill to express the distinction between the past, present and future. To learn these things, we always use examples that are relevant to the students’ everyday lives and their everyday communication needs. Hearing from a student that she now trusts herself to phone her GP surgery or her children’s school is hugely rewarding.

At the moment I produce my own teaching materials. If anyone knows of a textbook geared towards adult students from Middle Eastern and/or African backgrounds, please let me know by email at

Ortrun Peyn

LearnDirect Maths and English Functional Skills

The Walthamstow Learndirect Centre offers January courses in Maths & English Functional Skills Level 1 & Level 2.

Please refer candidates directly to the Walthamstow Learndirect centre to sign up and be assessed for the course. These 2 courses are free to UK/EU nationals and UK residents . All other courses are free to candidates on benefit.

Any queries, please contact
Aubrey M.Pengula
Partnership Consultant, learndirect
T: 02085 091666 | E:  | M: 07506 758808

Interfaith Event – Significant Threads of Faiths

PL8 4U – ALSUFFA are holding a fund raising event at Walthamstow Assembly Hall on 7th February 2018.

Tickets are free and can be found on the eventbrite page

  • Raffle Prizes!
  • Religious Attire Fashion Show
  • Live Music
  • Photographic Exhibition/competition
  • 3D Exhibition
  • Drama performance Centrally Theatre
  • 3 Course meal

Ward Community Grants

A reminder from Clive Bowyer, WMSC

Hi all,
Each ward in Waltham Forest is allowed to make grants to a total of £10.000 pa for community projects.

Please consider approaching one or more of your ward councillors and chat them up explaining what it is you do and convince them of the worthiness of your cause.

As usual the way it works is that having been offered a grant, at the end of the period you have to write a little report on what you have achieved, and what you have spent the grant on. The Council will then usually pay out – just note you have to spend the money before you can claim it!

So this link tells you about ward community grants

And this link tells you how to find and contact your ward councillors

Once you have established who your councillors are on this link, click on their photo and another page will come up giving various details including when and where they hold their surgeries. That’s usually the best place to go and see them.
Good luck!

Conversation Clubs: January 2018 Update

Would you like to be able to speak English with more confidence? Why not join an English Conversation Club. There are a wide variety of Conversation Clubs taking place across the borough – there’s sure to be one near you!

Run by trained volunteers, English Language clubs allow you to practise speaking English in an informal, relaxed environment.  The clubs are free and take place on different days and in different venues across the borough.  There is sure to be a club near your home.  You will make friends and get the opportunity to discuss lots of different topics.  Each week you will find that you can express yourself better in English.

For more information, email or call the conversation club hotline on 020 8496 1130

For a listing of clubs in Leyton and Leytonstone, please click here
For a listing of clubs in Walthamstow and Chingford, please click here

Tell MAMA – Reporting Hate Crime

Tell MAMA (Measuring Anti-Muslim Attacks) is a national organisation tracking incidents of anti-Muslim or Islamophobic harassment, abuse or other form of attack. They are keen to link to the ESOL provision across London, and are planning to run workshops with the ESOL providers across Waltham Forest.

Their workshops include talking about what is hate crime, reasons why people may not want to report hate crime, reasons why it is helpful to report hate crime and places that victims of hate crime can find support.

If you would like to report an anti-Muslim or Islamophobic hate crime, please ring 0800 456 1226 Monday to Friday, 9am-5pm, or contact Tell MAMA at any hour on the following means:

text (SMS): 0115 707 0007
WhatsApp:  0734 184 6086

twitter: @tellmamaUK
facebook: tellmamauk

Conversation Clubs

There are a wide variety of Conversation Clubs taking place across the borough – there’s sure to be one near you! 

These free groups are a relaxed atmosphere, perfect for people who want to drop in and practice English. Whether someone wants more practice in addition to a course or whether they just want a place to chat and build their confidence, the Conversation Clubs are a great resource.

For a full listing, please click here.