Registered Charity No. 1013308
Residents who choose to take part in our befriending scheme, are paired with one or two Griffin students. Students visit their resident on a weekly basis, often sharing conversation on the latest goings on locally and updating each other on events occurring in each other’s lives. The befriending scheme provides an intergenerational link that modern society often lacks.
Griffin Community Trust has an ongoing affiliation with the day centre at Toynbee Hall in Aldgate. Griffin Students host weekly sessions on Wednesday afternoon between 2pm and 4pm, with each student volunteering once a term. Elderly residents of Tower Hamlets regularly attend these to meet up with our student volunteers as well as other medical and dental students from Barts and The London. Typically we drink tea and chat about everything from the Cray twins to the latest football news. We are involved in events taking place at Toynbee Hall, including singing and sewing! Shaftesbury residents are invited to events at Toynbee Hall and Toynbee visitors are also invited to the majority of our 'out-events' as well as the highlight of our year - the Annual Garden Party.
Our programme of group activities and events run from the September to May of each year, and are organised by small groups of students at Griffin House. Each month, a different group of students put together either an ‘in-event’ in the common room at Shaftesbury Lodge or an ‘out-event’ at places of interest further afield. Regardless of the location, these events are an opportunity for Shaftesbury residents to gather socially and have a good time whilst enjoying each other’s company. This helps build relationships with their neighbours - both other residents and students.
Some of the ‘in-events’ held this year include a fireworks night and the return of some old favourites, such as the ‘Night at the Races’. Similarly, our monthly ‘out-events’ to places of interest across London include a boat trip on the Thames and our annual Christmas meal at the Marriott. Our ‘out-events’ are particularly cherished, as these enable the residents of Shaftesbury Lodge to continue to experience some of the many wonderful events in the city they grew up in. For many, this would not otherwise be possible without the social and practical support provided by the students.