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OCC art workshop with Netstorm

On Saturday 2nd December we held our first art workshop with our partners Netstorm (Catch 22 and Mosaic). The session was fun, as expected; a welcome relief from a stressful week for young and old. It also revealed the inner artist that many of us had lying dormant within us. With good guidance and support we drew our faces and the results were great. The fact that we had this ability inside us but were too caught up in life to take the time to find it taught us some great lessons. If you don’t look for something you will never find it and if you don’t try, you’ll never know. The fact is, we all did better than we thought we would and that was a very uplifting and confidence-building feeling. A great day!

See the photos

valentines day

Valentine’s Day Coffee Morning

On Thursday 16th February we held our Valentine’s day coffee morning to bring a bit of cheer to our Thursday Food bank. 

Alongside the usual spread of food from our great suppliers’ was an extra table serving hot drinks to all who wanted them and tables for them to sit, drink and chat. The food bank, as always, was well attended and because of the Valentine’s theme we had a chance to spend more time with our users and for them to talk to each other and provide supportive words and a bit of light relief from the daily grind.

We’d like to thank all of our wonderful volunteers as well as representatives from Newham Council (pictured with volunteers), for attending and making it such a lovely day. But most importantly we’d like to thank all our food bank users for coming and warming us and each other with their wonderful smiles and conversations that show, our community cares. 

Thanks to our partners: Lottery Community Fund,  City Harvest, Felix , Newham Food Alliance and ELBA

Youth Empowerment Fund

Youth Empowerment Fund

The Youth Empowerment Fund is a grant to support young people in achieving their ambitions, by providing financial assistance to help them buy the resources, training or equipment required to learn and develop skills in the things they are passionate about. Whether your ambition is to enrol onto a training programme, or you need financial assistance in buying resources to support your school/college course, or help to buy sports/arts equipment, the list goes on. If overcoming some barriers for your ambition requires financial assistance we want you to apply!

View on Newham website

Click for application guidance notes

Financial assistance

Up to £100 – reviewed monthly

Examples of what you can use it for include: computer software, travel assistance, to join a

club that increases skills, purchase kit, attend an event that supports learning, passport, attend

trips and visits that support learning, development, social connections and positive networks

£101 – £1000 – reviewed March, May, September, November

Examples include: a training course, interview attire, laptop, kit to support learning,

educational experience, a series of vocational lessons

£1001 – £2500 – reviewed January and July

Examples include: Tuition fee, overseas placement, a bursary

These are just a few examples and is not an exhaustive list of what the fund can be used for.


The fund is open to any young person aged 9 to 25 who lives in Newham or who has been placed out of the borough as part of their care or safeguarding arrangements and meet the following criteria:

  • You must live in Newham and have lived here continuously for the last six months, or in care and have been placed outside of Newham as part of your care and/or safeguarding arrangements;
  • You are only eligible for one award within your age category although further applications can be applied for as a young person moves into the next age band. These age bands are: 9 – 12 years, 13 – 15 years, 16 – 25 years;

And be in living in a household with of one or more of the following:

  • Households in receipt of the 90% Council Tax Reduction (CTR)
  • Households with an income of less that £25,000 per annum
  • Children in receipt of Free School Meals (FSM)
  • Children who are subject to No Recourse to Public Funds (NRPF)
  • Children that are looked-after (LAC)

Applications can be independently completed by someone who is 18 – 25. If you are 9 – 17

and would like to apply you will need to ask your parent or carer to answer the eligibility

question to enable you to continue with your application.

If you would like to discuss the application and process, contact  yefinfo@newham.gov.uk

science museum

Science Museum Trip

We are an organisation that live up to our name. Our objective is to be a hub where the diverse community of Newham can  get together meet in a nice environment, play, get counselling and be fed through our foodbank.

On 20th August, we were at it again, this time we organised a day trip to the Science museum and a picnic afterwards. This was primarily for the kids during their summer holidays as well as friends, family and other members.

The trip started at 9am with everyone meeting at Custom House station. That went well and we started our journey to our destination where we gained entry using our free entry QR code.

The group had the opportunity to explore the museum together, then we had a delicious lunch break topped with some ice cream desserts. 

We enjoyed a session of aeroplane VR experience, then everyone had the opportunity to explore separately and the kids took turns in asking museum staff questions. 

The trip was concluded by trips to the parks, Princess Diana water fountain, the kids feeding the ducks and geese and so many other things. The kids had a great time in the Princess Diana playground, playing in the sandpits and climbing the play ship, dressing up and pretending to be pirates. It was all truly fun. 

OCC is extremely grateful to all the sponsors, volunteers and donors for making that trip possible and for making unforgettable memories for everyone especially the kids.

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Coffee Morning

At our weekly Friday coffee (or tea) mornings we like to meet up, chat and make each other feel good. The caring, sharing and laughs come thick and fast. We decided this time to introduce some arts and crafts into the event which went down a storm. Once again, lots to learn from each other.

Southend Day Trip

Day trip to Southend

With the support of the Lottery Community Fund, we hosted a trip to Southend-on-Sea on the 28th of August 2022, allowing many children and families to enjoy the beach and Adventure Island Theme Park. It was an amazing turnout of 80 people! During the trip, everyone enjoyed the summer vibes and spent time eating and relaxing while some chose to live life on the edge and chase the thrills Southend had to offer. 


Our participants expressed how glad they were to be included in this experience and how it was “an amazing escape from daily stresses”. During our interview, one of the kids told us that she “had fun” but couldn’t ride all the rides, so she “Can’t wait until next time”. 


We’re excited to provide everyone with the opportunity to experience such joys again next year after the trip went so well and everyone seems enthusiastic about repeating the experience!