Category Archives: Community

Brixton Fund spotlight: Brixton Design Trail Pressgang

At our Brixton Fund event last month we funded six awesome local projects.

One of those was the Brixton Design Trail Pressgang, a work experience project run by local youth employment enterprise Raw Talent. Founder Abigail believes that work experience is too often an uninspiring activity, and she’s on a mission to change that!

The BDT Pressgang is an example of how a week of work experience can become a transformative and inspirational experience – one that ultimately meets Raw Talent’s aims of helping  disadvantaged young people overcome the barriers to finding fulfilling work.

Teaming up with Brixton Design Trail, students responded to a specific brief: to research, develop and produce content to support the Design Trail in the leadup to Design Week in September.

Working on a specific project with clear outcomes helps students engage more wholly in work experience and gives them the chance to accomplish a real piece of work, developed as a project through the stages from conception to completion.

As a fully functioning media team, students went out into the streets of Brixton to conduct research, meeting businesses, artists and residents and taking photos, filming segments and conducting interviews.

Students visited Pop Brixton, amongst other places, to talk to the businesses there about their participation in Design Week. To supplement the project work, they also took part in mini CV writing, social media and events management workshops run for free by Pop businesses through the Community Investment Scheme.

The students really enjoyed their week, especially working in teams, meeting new people and writing the stories about the Brixton Design Trail. Linda Quinn, editor of our esteemed local newspaper the Brixton Bugle, was impressed with the quality of writing and is planning a spread for the September edition. Watch this space!

Are you a Brixton business who can help share your skills to with local young people by offering some work experience? Or are you a young person interested in finding meaningful work experience or participating in employment & careers-related workshops? Get in touch with Lucy (lucy @ brixtonpound.org).

Brixton Design Trail is a collaborative creative network that provides a platform for showcasing a wealth of homegrown talent during the London Design Festival, which will take place 16-24th September.

 

#yourpound: Celebration – Our 4th Birthday!

Doesn’t time fly! The Brixton Pound will be four years old at the end of September and we’d like you all to come and celebrate with us. Our existence has been marked by ever-increasing growth in the currency, as well as a commitment to innovation which makes us one of the most successful local currencies in the UK.

Four years and four great reasons to celebrate the Brixton Pound

Picture 9

1) We are the first local currency in an urban area in the UK (and London!)

2) We are the first local currency to introduce an electronic pay-by-text version

3) We are the first local currency to launch a business rates scheme, allowing local businesses to pay their council tax in Brixton Pounds

4) We are the first local currency to pilot payroll local, which allows all council employees (and other businesses too) to receive part of their salary in Brixton Pounds.

None of this would have been without the ongoing commitment of local businesses, the loyalty of our users, and the enthusiasm of our supporters in Brixton and beyond. To say thank you and to mark four years of keeping Brixton’s economy vibrant, we are inviting you all to join us on Thursday 19 September from 6.30pm at the wonderful Seven at Brixton in Market Row. For early arrivals we’ll greet you with a complimentary glass of sangria, and we’ll also be rewarding our top 3 pay-by-text users, as well as giving out prizes.

It will also be a chance for you to hear about how the Brixton Pound is going, and find out a bit more about local currencies around the world – which is convenient as 16-20 September is International Local Currencies Week!

Get the date in your diary, let your friends know and be sure to RSVP – space is limited!

Here is a short slideshow celebrating 4 incredible years!

B£ Birthday Slideshow from Brixton Pound on Vimeo.

 

 

Payroll Local: UK first for local currencies

For the first time next month some Lambeth Council employees will be part paid in Brixton Pounds. Back in June we announced plans for its launch and we’re excited to say that the scheme is now live! The scheme gives all Lambeth Council employees the chance of receiving a portion of their salary in electronic Brixton Pounds (B£e).

Employees can then spend their B£e with local, independent businesses or donate to local charities and social enterprises. Employees who wish to be part of the scheme will receive an additional 10% on the proportion of salary they put into their online B£ account.

Over 120 members of staff have already pledged to receive a portion of their salary in Brixton Pounds, which is excellent news for local, independent businesses who are likely to see increased trade as a result. It is also great news for our community, as more money will stick to Brixton, directly benefiting local residents. That’s not all! The scheme will offer a convenient way to donate to local charities, social enterprises and community groups that may not be reached by corporate payroll giving schemes. Details of the charities involved can be found here.

If you work for Lambeth Council and would like a portion of your salary in Brixton Pounds, please sign up here. Detailed questions and answers can be found here however if there is anything else you would like to know, please email us on info@brixtonpound.org.

We’re grateful for funding from Nesta from their innovation in giving fund without which this project would not have happened.

Once again, this is a U.K. first. Something that Brixton can be really proud of. If you’re not yet using Brixton Pounds, there couldn’t be a more exciting time to get on board. There are now 92 businesses using pay-by-text. Open an account today!

 

Payroll Local to launch in September!

Today we announced a new way for Lambeth Council’s 3,000 staff to support their local community – Payroll Local will launch this autumn. Payroll local is a scheme that will allow all Lambeth Council employees to receive a small portion of their salary in electronic Brixton Pounds (B£e). They can then spend their B£e with local, independent businesses or donate to local charities and social enterprises. Employees who wish to be part of the scheme will receive an additional 10% on the proportion of salary they put into their online B£ account.

Derrick Anderson (pictured), Chief Executive of Lambeth Council, has already committed to receiving part of his salary in B£es.

This is excellent news for local, independent, Brixton businesses who are likely to see increased trade as a result. It is also great news for our community, as more money will stick to Brixton, directly benefiting local residents. In additon, the scheme will offer a convenient way to donate to local charities, social enterprises and community groups that may not be reached by corporate payroll giving schemes.

The Brixton Pound’s managing director Simon Woolf commented “Payroll Local is one of a number of innovative schemes that we’re launching this year – It’s vital for the Brixton Pound’s ongoing success that we don’t stand still. We’re absolutely delighted to have support from Lambeth Council at the highest level, as they are one of the most important financial players in our community.

You can find out more about Payroll Local by watching this short video or by checking out our frequently asked questions page. Note that the video was put together a few months ago and there are now 72 businesses accepting pay-by-text, with more joining the scheme every week!

POWER TO THE PEOPLE!

Brixton Energy Team

Last week saw the launch of  inner London’s first co-operatively owned solar power station, and it is right here in the heart of Brixton!

Brixton Energy Solar 1 is a new Co-operative set up to enable local people to invest in renewable energy generation in Brixton and raise funds for energy efficiency initiatives. By investing in Brixton Energy Solar 1, your money will be put to work straight away to finance the installation of a major solar power station on the Loughborough Estate in Brixton and a Community Energy Efficiency Fund .”

The project will reduce the area dependence on far away energy sources and their volatile prices, helping reduce energy costs and fuel poverty, and helping cut carbon emissions. Genius.

Are you interested in investing? What would your investment mean in a nutshell?

  • Be at the start and a part of community owned renewable energy in London;
  • Help set up a Community Energy Efficiency Fund that will run for 25 years;
  • A return for your money.

So have a look at the website, read the prospectus and support Brixton Energy. To take action and invest, visit their share offer page.

Last but not least:  tell the world!