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A brief history of who we are and what we aim to do
- Who we are
We are Vassall and Coldharbour Forum (VACF), an umbrella organisation bringing together individuals, organisations and communities in the Vassall and Coldharbour wards in Brixton. We are bringing people together to radically improve the neighbourhood as a place to live, play and work. We're developing strategies that build and maintain existing resources with two key strategies in mind: allowing people to find their own solutions, working together to bring them about, or applying for funding and redirecting these resources where they will have the greatest beneficial impact. In short, doing together what we can't do alone.
- What we want
Our aim is simple: to make everyone in Vassall and Coldharbour more prosperous. To avoid replication and duplication of work that leads to greater competition for decreasing resources. We're looking at ensuring how everyone can afford to eat well all the time, and making our neighbourhood a safe and attractive place to live. We're focused on reducing loneliness and isolation, making better use of local skills and income, networking and overcoming many of the obstacles needed to make it happen. As well as creating new jobs we have a richer definition of wealth – we think it is whatever makes life worth living.
- Our community
We are working together as an enriched community that drawn from here, there and everywhere. We are historians, doctors researchers, herbalists, artists, musicans, dancers, builders, professors, lecturers, specialists, lawyers, artisans, technicians, writers, development strategists and many more. As a community we aim to find ways of securing prosperity for this generation and the next.
- Our history
Our history is rhubarb – the first Victorian market garden in the UK, started by Joseph Myatt, who changed rhubarb from a medicine to a staple at the British dinner table. Our history is Charlie Chaplin, Stan Laurel, Cherry Groce, Vincent van Gogh, Florence and the Machine. Our history is sugar plantations, working class strikes, politicians, aristocrats and sedate country gardens. Our history is welcoming: from French Huguenot refugees in the 17th Century to newer arrivals fleeing political turmoil. We are building Reminiscence Days and welcome you to join us with your stories and histories.
- Our future
Our future is to ensure our generations to come are not cast aside for the spoils of regeneration and gentrification. Everyone should have a place and a voice, regardless of income, race, gender, age, religion, or physical ability. We want a greener future in every sense of the word: trees, opportunity, community andnetworks. While we celebrate the past our aim is to ensure that everyone can visualise themselves in the future with a place in it that earns respect.