Adiaha Antigha Community Awards 2022 nominations

The categories of the Adiaha Antigha Awards 2022 are for the individual or organisation:

  • that has supported communities through the Covid pandemic
  • that has done the most effective campaigning work to tackle inequality and injustice
  • that has delivered outstanding long-term service to the community
  • that has done the most to support wellbeing.

See the details of the nominees below.

You can vote for nominees here.

The individual or organisation that has supported communities through the Covid pandemic

Caroline Hickey, HRMF

During the pandemic Caroline has worked very hard to reach disadvantaged refugee and migrant individuals, groups and organisation to bring them together for vaccination , meetings and researches with NHS Public Health to discuss about how deal with anti vaccination as well publicise info about services to support people suffering or alone at home short of food and drink supply. She was the leading person in Hackney Refugee & Migrant forum to communicate and organise meetings online with service providers and reps of the community for better service providing successfully during the pandemic.
Nominated by: Ali Aksoy

The Whole Team/Faisal, Apex
I’d like to put forward Apex for the work they did during the pandemic to support parents and young people. Not only did they support young people with education, sports, drama, music and mentoring classes; they also supported parents with food hampers and IT equipment. Apex was also on hand during the pandemic supporting families who needed childcare support and support for vulnerable young people; especially after-school hours and on weekends. A lot of people are not aware, but childcare was mainly available during the daytime and weekday (Mon-Fri) for NHS & essential workers in schools – but was very limited after school, during the evenings and on weekends. Apex stepped up to the challenge and supported many NHS front line workers, especially those working at Homerton hospital, like cleaners, nurses & admin staff. They also did lots of activities for kids; they also did a fantastic project for Simon Marks Jewish Primary School, supporting children and young people most impacted by Covid.
Nominated by: Zubair Bulbulia

Yashar Ismailoglu, Halkevi-The Kurdish and Turkish Community Centre
Yashar has been working in Hackney since 1975 and has thought hundreds of Turkish/Turkish Cypriot and Kurdish young people in Community Development Work. Most of his students with his encouragement they became local councillors. One of them is ex Hackney Cabinet member Mrs Feryal Demirci Stanley) now a member of British Parliament .Yashar has been an inspirational to many young people. During the Covid-19 he has worked single handed when Hackney Council did not support Halkevi’s project to cook and deliver hot meals to the needy and isolated Hackney residents. He visited over 800 families and individuals trying to find out their needs. He has established partnership with the Turkish Cypriot Community Association and African Network to deliver and donate hot meal and provisions. He has used his authority to open Halkevi doors to many African organisations and churches in order to share our premises. With his hard work Halkevi became a vaccination centre. His contribution to Hackney residents is tremendous and valuable. Has managed to changed the lives of many different ethnic background people. His tireless effort keep our Lunch Club alive since 1986 I strongly recommend him for this award which he deserves.
Nominated by: Devrim Yesiltas


Hot Line Meals Service
Hot Line Meals Service (London) have been a lifeline of support and care throughout the pandemic for countless families and individuals experiencing sudden long or short term hardships of many kinds. They have stepped in to assist those suffering from financial hardships by providing food vouchers and food packages. They have accompanied countless in their journey of covid and recovery by providing corona respite homes. They have held the elderly’s hand throughout all the hurdles of the most unpredictable 2 years by providing warm nutritious meals and a buddy befriending service was in place according to government guidelines at the time. They have stepped up to plate through providing these and more unparalleled dedicated services to the community in the Hackney and Haringey areas, amongst London’s 10 most deprived boroughs. Besides for walking one step ahead in anticipating the needs of the local community, they are putting into effect steps to pull those still stuck in the rut covid pushed us all into be it financial advise, health wise or family support needed. For the above and all the aid they provided yet the public is not aware of, I wish to nominate this incredible organisation that is mostly volunteer led by the kindest people I know and has a massive heart that encapsulates the whole community and cares for its needs.
Nominated by: Blimie Bransdorfer


Michelle Baker, Round Chapel Old School Rooms
The Round Chapel Old Schools is an amazing community space and organisation who really stepped up during Covid to help the community. From being the hub for food deliveries to vulnerable people to bringing the community together to help each other it’s always there to move in an agile way and make the best of its human resources, space, and connections. We are based here so we’re a bit biased BUT we see on a daily basis how effective they are at helping the most vulnerable in society. From the community meal, support to help people out of crisis, hosting the Hackney Winter Night Shelter and being a space for many support groups, activities and family support services they are a real hub and did an amazing job during covid lockdowns.
Nominated by: Alix Stredwick


Joyclen Buffong, Rise 365
Joyclen has had real impact before, but specially during and since the pandemic. She has hugely impacted communities on and around the Kingsmead Estate, particularly young black men, but also the wider community. She has raised the profile of their community work and positive impact in media across London, and nationally through their film on Together TV, ITVHub and Sky online.She has enabled the young people to have a voice in Hackney via the Mayor, Child Q demonstrations and much more. See the short film about her and her work:
Nominated by: Caroline Diehl

Jo Carter, Immediate Theatre
Immediate Theatre responded instantly to Covid, providing practical and emotional support to their most vulnerable participants and adapting service delivery. They moved all programmes online, provided 84 tablets for young people with no access to digital devices at home, and hand-delivered 4,000 craft packs to 300 young people. They launched ‘Stepping Up’, online workshops supporting young people transitioning to Secondary school, and ‘Hackney Social Radio’ (HSR), a weekly FM radio programme targeted at digitally isolated older people. HSR enabled people to remain connected to Hackney, hear about projects, events, and initiatives, and find out how to access help and support. They involved 382 local people in the production of HSR, created new jobs, and provided paid work for 25 freelance creatives at a time when work was very limited. The entire team were extremely dedicated, creative, and flexible in their approach, and deserve to be recognised for their unwavering commitment to Hackney communities. “Lockdown affected my education and mental health. My mum is a nurse, so she was at work a lot. I felt really isolated at home, but Immediate Theatre still ran their sessions, so it felt like there were people there for me and I wasn’t alone” – participant.
Nomindated by: Georgia Gill

Saidu Bangura, Hawa Trust Ltd
Saidu is passionate about supporting vulnerable communities especially those impacted by the Covid-19 pandemic. He has been involved in collecting and collating public health data, designing Covid-19 leaflets, distributing information to local residents, and helping us in our social media postings – YouTube, Facebook, twitter. He has also worked to provide food, ppe and other practice support for vulnerable BME women and reach out to refugees and undocumented immigrants who are afraid to go for testing because of their immigration status. Reaching BME young people has been a challenge as most believed that the covid-19 virus was designed to make blacks infertile. He has worked to dispel this myth through our WhatsApp groups and outreach in the local community. As volunteer coordinator he has facilitated the training of community champions and outreach volunteers. BME women reported increases in domestic abuse during Covid-19; as a black man, Saidu has been able to reach out to victims and put out messages targeting potential male perpetrators. He was awarded a certificate by HCVS for his work during the pandemic. As a result we have seen increases in uptakes of the vaccine and a gradual positive change in attitudes towards understanding Covid-19.
Nominated by: Hawa Sesay

Charmain Humphrey, Immediate Theatre
Charmain Humphrey has been with Immediate Theatre since 1999. She is an extremely dedicated member of staff who always goes above and beyond her duties to support the young people we work with, their families and the wider community. Charmain works tirelessly to support, encourage and advocate for our young participants.At the start of the first national lockdown, Charmain took it upon herself to hand-deliver craft packs to participants. In doing so, she was able to speak to families and support those most in need with food and signpost them to other services. Many of our participants live in very challenging circumstances and without access to a computer or device. Charmain requested that the company purchased and delivered computer tablets to participants, enabling them to sustain engagement with our online workshops and keep up with their school work. She maintained regular contact with both participants and parents over the phone and via WhatsApp, supporting them in whatever way she could. Charmain ensured we had measures in place to be able to safely deliver in person projects as soon as possible after lockdown, knowing how badly the young people needed a safe space to be creative and have fun.
Nominated by: Suzy Smith

Oladapo Awosokanre, Community African Network
CAN run several community vaccine clinic and outreach event for Hackney residents during Covid.
Nominated by: Fred Kamig

Michelle Dornelly, Children with Voices
Michelle has run Children with Voices for nearly 20 years, running children and young people’s cook and eat programmes, and alongside mentoring and wellbeing programmes. Inspired by the issues she saw around her, Michelle was determined to do what she could to address poverty, holiday hunger and gang culture. During the pandemic, Michelle stepped up and started running food hubs across the borough. Michelle is a dynamic and inspiring leader – with at one point 60 volunteers helping at the hubs, driving to collect spare food from supermarkets and delivering food parcels to people who were isolating or unable to get out. Entirely run through WhatsApp groups, Michelle showed herself to be an amazing organiser, as well as being passionate about serving the community, and determined to make a difference. With a black woman leader, and many women of colour in lead roles, and volunteers from across Hackney’s diverse communities.. Since the pandemic, with rising prices , the need for the food hubs has not decreased, and Michelle and team continue to feed 800 people a week through the 4 food hubs and the deliveries, as well as starting back with the regular children’s programme.
Nominated by: Liz Hughes

(MHDT) London Development Trust
This nomination is for the work that Manor House Development Trust carried out during the pandemic in the Woodberry Down are and across the whole of LB Hackney. Responding to severe local need MHDT organised food and other emergency aid. Over the summer MHDT led a consortium of local groups and drew down £80k central government money to provide culturally appropriate food to those in need. MHDT has worked on the Woodberry Down estate running community engagement activities and managing the Redmond Community Centre in north Hackney, London since 2011. We are a trusted and well embedded service provider to the local community. Much of our activities have centred around employability skills, reducing isolation, community cohesion and health and wellbeing.
Nominated by: Simon Peter Donovan

Erim Metto, Turkish Cypriot Community Assoication
Turkish Cypriot Community Association (TCCA), Based in Haringey/Hackney serves the needs of elderly, frail, and those with need. In March 2020, TCCA launched the COVID-19 Support Initiative. From a standing start, the initiative was on a weekly basis, producing 800 meals, 300 essential-packs, befriending for 100 elders, supporting a 24-hour helpline, maintaining a WhatsApp information point, streaming information programmes, holding online events to help with wellbeing and even managed to hold an online community festival that was viewed by over 50000 people. Most of the support targeted to Hackney and Enfield where majority of its funding camefrom. Support was also given to three hospitals, four care-homes, two fire stations, ten community centres and a local police station. The initiative continued to develop and reacts to the ever-changing Covid-19 environment it added counselling service, Vaccination Ambassadors programme, vaccination for the young, pop-up vaccination centre, Mental health support, encouraging uptake of the vaccine/wellbeing within Hackneys BAME community and the support of Hackney micro business support programme helping and TCCA Covid Compliance scheme helping BAME micro community business with the help needed so that they can operate safely and in line with current good practice. In October 2021 Third Sector Awards (the Oscars of the charity sector), awarded TCCA “Covid Front Line Team of the Year”.
Nominated by: Dr Mek Mehmet Yesil


The individual or organisation that has done the most effective campaigning work to tackle inequality and injustice

Nichola Lauder, IRIE Mind
Nichola is the director of IRIE Mind, a mental health service designed by the African and Caribbean community, for the African and Caribbean community. Nichola has dedicated herself to helping people in the community, championing Black mental health and being an advocate for anyone who needs support
Nominated by: Rianna Comer

Ngozi Fulani, Sistah Space
Sistah Space has done an amazing job with their campaign for Valerie’s Law, which advocates for mandatory Cultural Competency training that accounts for the cultural nuances and barriers, colloquialisms, languages and customs that make up the diverse black community. They consistently punch above their weight with hard-hitting social media campaigns and a national poster campaign, which has genuinely influenced debate and made a lasting impact
Nominated by: Vicky Scott


The individual or organisation that has delivered outstanding long-term service to the community

Hackney Lunch Clubs Network
I would like to nominate the collective lunch clubs of Hackney. There are currently 12 lunch clubs that receive funding from Hackney Council and many have been supporting older people with a nutritious lunch and essential social contact since the mid 1980s. One of the clubs (Holly Street) is celebrating 47 years this year. The clubs rely on dedicated community workers and volunteers to shop, chop, cook, manage, support, invite, care, promote, fundraise, report write, create (and the list goes on). I think of Velma the manager of Chats Lunch Club who juggles caring for her elderly mother and planning for the next special lunch. I think of Salmah at the North London Muslim Community Centre who dedicates her energy to the ladies lunch club when her main duty is a busy job with the children’s centre downstairs. I think of Wing Kong from Hackney Chinese Community Service who gets up before dawn to pick up vegetables on a Monday morning from Spitalfields Market. I think of Nerine the manager at Holly Street Lunch Club who keeps her positive spirit up inspite of the club going through some recent challenges including a serious flood and imminent move to temporary accommodation. I could keep going. The lunch clubs are hidden gems that many residents in Hackney might not be aware of. They bring joy, safety, nurturance and belonging to many older members of our community and they deserve our attention, recognition and dedicated support. With well over 300 years of cumulative support serving the diverse communities of Hackney including Kurdish, Jewish, Caribbean, Chinese, Vietnamese, Cypriot, Turkish, Muslim, South Asian.
Nominated by: Rachel King


Peter Merrifield, SWIM Enterprises
Peter has started this organisation from scratch and built it up with his hard work and achieved so many great milestones just in the space of the two years that SWIM has been in existence. SWIM has impacted the local black community immensely with our PACT programme that offers psychological support to black men in the criminal justice system and men who are on the road to recovery from addiction. Behind of all of SWIM’s hard work is Peter who works incredibly hard to ensure we do not fall short in offering interventions and support to the local black community. Peter Merrifield deserves this award for being a model CEO and for inspiring the SWIM team to follow in his footsteps and work hard to assist our local communities in need of support
Nominated by: Ruqqaiyah Adia


Mrs Hannah Israel & Mrs Dolly Scharf, S Pinter Youth Project
Opened in 1995 by local parents in response to local need, S Pinter Youth Project(SPYP) has set the precedence for a project that continues to be highly user-led and inclusive, supporting disadvantaged children and young people and their families from Minority Ethnic groups, whilst broadening the horizons of its young service users. SPYP has become a household xxx within the local communities and trusted by the particular age and groups targeted, offering a welcoming, safe and happy place to play, learn, explore and progress. Years of selfless dedication by a team of adult and youth volunteers, who are the force behind SPYP’S mission to continue to transform the lives of thousands of children in need, giving them better chances in life. Headteachers attest that it is noticeable on pupils each time they return to school after a holiday break, what a great impact SPYP has had on them. They return with more confidence, self-esteem, without feelings of isolation and exclusion as they share their memories with peers. Local stakeholders value SPYP for their compassion, caring, patience and ethos of friendship and inclusivity, whilst supporting and meeting the needs of disadvantaged young people – building stronger and more resilient youth of tomorrow.
Nominated by: Mrs Rebecca Deutsch


Jo Carter, Immediate Theatre
Immediate Theatre has been working with young people and communities in Hackney for 25 years. The company was set up by Jo Carter in 1996 with the aim of working closely with local organisations and communities to create performances responding to local issues, and engaging people in participatory arts projects that inspire wellbeing, break down barriers and engage people in the process of personal and social change. Their Estate-based Youth Theatre programme has been running for over 20 years and has been delivered on over 15 estates across the borough, engaging thousands of young people who do not traditionally have access to arts opportunities. They provide pathways into the creative industries and create first-time employment opportunities for those facing significant barriers. They engage older people through community theatre and create community cohesion through their intergenerational work. Led by founder Jo Carter, they are a team of incredibly dedicated, passionate and creative staff, freelancers and volunteers who are constantly looking for new ways to address key issues and create opportunities for local people to engage in the arts. They deserve to be recognised for their long-term service and commitment to Hackney. Read more about their work: 25th anniversary film:
Nominated by: Suzy Smith


Doreen Bullock, St Mary’s Tenants and Residents Association
Doreen has been the chair of St Mary’s TRA for 22 years, and the chair of the Shoreditch area panel of TRAs for 17 years. She has led the local tenants groups in bringing and solving local issues to Hackney Homes – repairs, safety, cleaning – as well as the support for community development in the area. Doreen has exemplified this herself – for example – every year Doreen holds at least 6 family days at the hall, alongside a bring and buy event – and with the proceeds funds coach trips for local residents – 7 trips a year – to seaside venues. For many local residents, including those with young children, this can be the only time they leave London each year. Doreen holds weekly drop in coffee mornings where residents can drop in and meet housing staff or community police, as well as other neighbours to connect in a friendly atmosphere. Doreen’s super powers are her dedication and consistency – she is always there for her tenants, and just keeps delivering what she can for her community.
Nominated by Liz Hughes


Nightingale Luncheon Club
Although I am (relatively) new to my role as lunch clubs development coordinator I am very aware that the lunch clubs in Hackney worked far beyond the call of duty during the pandemic to provide support to isolated older members of Hackney’s community. I have also nominated the lunch clubs collectively for a separate award but wanted to highlight and give thanks to Nightingale Lunch Club for their special care offered to their lunch club members and wider community during the 2020 and 2021 lockdown periods. Sisters Michelle and Denise and their family members have been the backbone behind Nightingale’s lunch club for many years. Their mother Noreen (who is sadly no longer with us) was a key member following on from the original group that started the original luncheon club. The sisters and niece Sarah continue enthusiastically to work hard to provide lunches 5 days a week for lunch club members. I have heard stories that during the pandemic, Michelle (who already works full time) continued to cook food from her kitchen, making sure that meals were delivered to lunch club members and other vulnerable adults. Michelle, Denise and Sarah were in touch on a daily basis by phone to members and there was a continued presence outside of the community hall where people were able to meet outside and drink tea together. Providing essential contact at a time when things were especially challenging. I am aware that other lunch clubs provided very similar support during this time too. Not only Nightingale.
Notes from my visit to Nightingale in March 2022: LOCKDOWN – Nightingale kept going during the lockdown. Didn’t close at all. Started doing home deliveries and some people would come down and sit outside for a cup of tea. They even celebrated Barbara’s 80th birthday with cake.
HISTORY – Nightingale Lunch Club is more than 40 years old. Originally started by residents Olive, Ray, Cissy, Eleanor and others. They started in a nearby church hall as meals on wheels service. Alice Burke, Ray (he’s in a home now, born in 1923), Nell is now 101. All the originals.
STAFF – Denise and Sarah are the workers and Michelle is the manager (alongside her full time job). Denise has been involved for 30 years. Her mother Noreen was very actively involved after the original group. Denise works here full time now. Had been caring for her mum for years.
The family are a gift to their community and I really hope they receive the recognition they deserve. Alongside other lunch clubs who bent over backwards during a very challenging time.
Nomination by: Rachel King


The individual or organisation that has done the most to support wellbeing

Peter Merrifield, Support When It Matters – SWIM
Since Peter has recovered from a long period of sustained poor mental health he wanted to give back to Hackney community where he was born and bred. The care he received turned Peter’s life around – and motivated him to change his path. He left a career in building surveying to work with vulnerable young people and adults in the CJS with dual diagnosis challenges. He is the founder of SWIM, who soon celebrate 2 years of service for NSH, Public health England, HMP, HMPPS and partnerships with other local community organisations, improving the well-being and reintegration back into society of Hackney residents.
// SWIM have an immense impact in Hackney, providing essential services to reduce re-offending, support mental health & wellbeing and improve public health & community engagement. This has all been achieved since Peter founded the organisation in the midst of the Covid-19 Pandemic in 2019. Despite Peter’s humility, his story is incredible; he recovered from a sustained period of poor mental health, substance misuse, homelessness and issues with the Criminal Justice System, and was able to turn his life around. He is an inspiration to the community he serves.
Nominated by: Angeline Clarke // Nominated by: Joe Wooden

Coach Reuben, Funn Club
Week in week out he is outdoors with kids through rain, hail or shine bringing smiles to faces. Engaging kids who often don’t like sports or who are usually very shy. I have never seen his level of enthusiasm and I know no kid who doesn’t love him or his sessions.
Nominated by: Sorcha Mathews

Anne-Marie Payne, Chair Disco Collective
During the COVID-19 pandemic, lockdown restrictions largely confined people to their neighbourhoods. Local communities became essential for many people’s practical support and social interactions, and connection to our communities became more vital. Community connectedness is a multi-dimensional concept that is both dependent on – and reflected in – a range of attitudes and activities. Hackney Wick is known as largely deprived in many areas, particularly social support and health.. Fully accessible Chair Disco is non-judgemental, fun, inclusive exercise within your own abilities. We are motivated to leave home, for exercise and companionship. The teacher is vibrant and fun and totally encouraging. My sense of isolation has greatly lessened and my mobility improving. AND its fun
Nominated by: Anne Sudbury