Fairtrade fortnight celebrated by Brent voluntary organisation

11:56 19 March 2013 (First published in Brent and Kilburn Times)

The event last week formed the culmination of Fairtrade fortnight

The event last week formed the culmination of Fairtrade fortnight

Event held by BTWSC at the Learie Constantine Centre in Willesden

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A Brent based voluntary organisation ended a special fortnight dedicated to Fairtrade with a presentation in Willesden.

The ‘Lets Talk Fairtrade and fairness’ event, which was organised by BTWSC, was attended by guests including charity worker and Mission Dine Club founder Dame Betty Asafu-Ajaye.

The presentation took place at the Learie Constantine Centre on Dudden Hill Lane and was hosted by Normal Mullings, West Indian Association chair.

A cross-section of residents including parents, and representatives of voluntary organisations were also in attendance as well as Cllr Nana Asante, Deputy Mayor at Harrow Council and a member of Brent’s Fairtrade Steering Group.

During the meeting, on Sunday, March 10, Cllr Asante, who made a presentation on the benefits of Fairtrade said having at least two Fairtade products in your shopping trolley can make a “real difference” for community projects.

Mr Mullings added: “We as a community must do whatever we can to assist our brothers in Africa, the Caribbean and Asia, to feed and educate their children.” Fairtrade items courtesy of the Co-operative, such as chocolates, bananas, orange juice and sparkling wine were also given away as samples

BTWSC, which stands for Beyond the Will Smith Challenge, is a Brent-based, pan-London not-for-profit voluntary organisation. It uses the creative arts to develop the potential of youth and adults and is also engaged in raising aspirations and promoting social inclusion.

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School in Kingsbury awarded with prestigious honour

12:00 23 March 2013 (First Published in Brent and Kilburn Times)

Woodfield School is celebrating after being awarded 'Teaching School Status'

Woodfield School is celebrating after being awarded ‘Teaching School Status’

Woodfield School has become one of only 350 schools in the country to be granted teaching school status

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A school in Kingsbury has been recognised for its hard work and been given a prestigious honour.

Woodfield School, in Glenwood Avenue, has become one of only 350 schools in the country to be granted teaching school status.

Teaching status, which is given by the National College for Schools Leadership (NCSL) gives schools rated as outstanding by Ofsted the freedom and autonomy to lead others, working to deliver high quality support for teachers and leaders at all stages in their career.

Staff from the successful school, which caters for pupils with Special Educational Needs (SEN) will now attend an induction at the national college learning and conference centre in Nottingham.

Desi Lodge Patch, the school’s head teacher, said: “We are looking forward to working with our strategic partners to train the next generation of teachers who will gain the skills and expertise to work in both mainstream and special schools.”

As they develop, teaching schools working with other schools and universities will help to provide the next generation of teachers and head teachers and will support schools in challenging circumstances.

Cllr Ketan Sheth, who is vice-chair of the governing body of Woodfield, said: “We celebrate and recognise achievement and efforts at all levels, and we were proud to retain our outstanding rating at our most recent Ofsted inspection.”

Meeting to showcase the way businesses are helping the community in Brent to take place next week

20:00 24 March 2013 (First Published in Brent and Kilburn Times)

Cllr Muhammed Butt

Cllr Muhammed Butt

The Business Breakfasts event will take place at South Kilburn Studios

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The latest in a series of meetings showcasing the ways businesses are helping the community is coming to Kilburn.

The Business Breakfasts event, hosted by the Employer Partnership and Brent Council, is at South Kilburn Studios next Wednesday.

The series of events, chaired by Vijay Amin, director of ABI Associates Ltd, highlight the ways firms in Brent have benefited the community.

Cllr Muhammed Butt, leader of Brent Council, said: “Supporting growth in the local economy is one of my top priorities and that means supporting local businesses during these tough times.

“These events are part of our support, and are a great resource for Brent businesses.”

The latest event, Taking a Creative Approach, will focus on three successful projects.

The first is work at South Kilburn Studios to help unemployed young people, and the second, recycling firm Seneca’s work with schoolchildren and artists which resulted in the transformation of a vandalised wall facing the Metropolitan and Jubilee Tube line into a piece of public art.

Also being discussed is Ikea’s joint project with Brent Council and The Woodland Trust to plant more trees at Brent River Park.

Businesses wanting to attend should RSVP by tomorrow (Friday) to employerpartnership@brent.gov.uk or call 020 8937 1074.

Kilburn man in battle to be crowned the world’s bodybuilding champion

08:00 30 March 2013 (First Published in Brent and Kilburn Times)

Jonathan Erskine-Nartey who will compete next month

Jonathan Erskine-Nartey who will compete next month

Jonathan Erskine-Nartey will take part in contest in Hertfordshire

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A Kilburn man will join fitness models and athletes from across the world when he takes part in a gruelling test of physique and fitness.

Jonathan Erskine-Nartey will be taking part in Miami Pro World championships Hertfordshire.

Jonathan, of Messina Avenue, has been training four times a week.

He said “I’ve got a story to tell that would be an inspiration to all aspiring fitness athletes.”

He has won Miami Pro, the Mr Personality UK championships and Miami Pro European championships and has undergone various forms of strength training and bodybuilding routines.

Jonathan said: “This is exactly what I wanted to be – a male fitness model.” He will compete in St Alban’s on April 7.

Neasden worker to take part in Virgin London Marathon

08:00 01 April 2013 (First Published in Brent and Kilburn Times)

Terry Duff will be running the London Marathon this year

Terry Duff will be running the London Marathon this year

Terry Duff works for Glynns Skips in Neasden Lane

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A Neasden worker will be snaking through the city streets when he takes on the annual Virgin London Marathon.

Terry Duff, who works for Glynns Skips in Neasden Lane, will be raising money for disabled children’s charity Whizz Kid. The charity, based in Victoria, helps disabled children receive the right mobility equipment, advice & training so they can lead more independent lives.

In preparation for the big event next month Mr Duff has been clocking up around 40 miles a week.

Speaking about the cause he said “Both my employers and colleagues have supported my chosen charity not only from a financial perspective but also given me the moral support that has carried me through my training”.

“I would like to thank the numerous local businesses that have contributed to a worthy charity”.

To sponsor Terry go to: http://uk.virginmoneygiving.com/terryduff

A surgeon from Neasden will also be taking part on behalf of a children’s charity.

Akash Patel, of Warren Road, has already raised more than £1,200 for The Children’s Trust before he’s even started the event which will take place on April 21.

Schoolchildren from Wembley officially welcome new residents into Brent

16:34 10 May 2013(First Published in Brent and Kilburn Times)

Chalkhill School pupils watch a citizenship ceremony at Brent Town Hall

Chalkhill School pupils watch a citizenship ceremony at Brent Town Hall

Pupils from Chalkhill Primary School attended the citizenship certificate award ceremony

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Schoolchildren from Wembley helped officially welcome new residents into the borough at Brent Town Hall yesterday.

Pupils from Chalkhill Primary School attended the citizenship certificate award ceremony at the Town Hall in Forty Lane.

The children aged between five and 11 were all members of the school council and also met with Mayor of Brent, Cllr Michael Adeyeye during the ceremony.

Cllr Adeyeye showed children the register of deaths births and weddings

Nancy Olie, who accompanied the children on the visit said the children greatly enjoyed the experience.

She said: “Our school is a multicultural school.

“Seeing the people of their own nationality getting the citizens certificate made the children excited.”

Citizenship ceremonies are held to welcome new British citizens over the age of 18 into their local community.

A civic dignitary gives the new citizens the history of the Borough and welcomes new citizens.

As part of the ceremony the new citizen has to swear or affirm an oath of allegiance to the Queen.

Labour politicians launch campaign to halt fire station closures

14:52 20 May 2013 (First published in Brent and Kilburn Times)

Camapign launched against plans to close 12 fire stations

Camapign launched against plans to close 12 fire stations

Navin Shah and Barry Gardiner kick-start crusade in Wembley

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Labour politicians have launched a campaign to save the closure of 12 fire stations in London claiming the plans will have an impact on the lives of Brent residents.

Navin Shah, Assembly Member for Brent and Harrow, teamed up with Barry Gardiner, MP for Brent North, outside Wembley Fire Station to kick-start their crusade last Friday.

They claim the proposals by the Mayor of London through the Draft London Safety Plan (LSPF) will result in an arrival time increase of 15 seconds for the first engine and 16 seconds for a second.

According to campaigners, with three fire fatalities Brent had the joint highest number in the city alongside Islington in 2011/12.

Cllr Aslam Choudry, the newly elected Brent Council lead member for crime and public safety, said: “The closure of fire stations is going to have a major impact on the lives of people in Brent.”

A public consultation into the plans, which will also see the loss of 18 engines and 520 fire-fighter posts, ends on June 17.

Mr Shah, who is also the vice chair of the London Fire Authority, said: “People have been concerned about the plans to close the fire stations.

“I appeal our residents, businesses and stakeholders to ensure that they oppose the closure of fire stations.”

Ron Dobson, London Fire Commissioner, said LSPF would continue to keep Londoners safe.

He added: “Preventing fires before they happen is our priority and our commitment to community safety work will continue, including our successful home fire safety scheme, which sees around 70,000 free smoke alarms fitted each year.”

To take part in the consultation visit http://www.london-fire.gov.uk.