Connect Hackney

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Connect Hackney is working with partners from across the borough’s voluntary and community sector to achieve our aim of reducing and preventing social isolation for people aged 50 and over.

In phase one (2015-18) of Connect Hackney we funded over 20 community projects to support older people to participate in activities designed to bring them into contact with other people in the community, with the aim of improving their wellbeing.

The learning and evidence from phase one has shaped our commissioning priorities going forward. New partners in the current stage of phase two (2018-21) are focusing on:

Addressing the needs of groups that are more likely to face social isolation:

  • People with learning disabilities;
  • People from BAME communities (Turkish and Kurdish; Black African – other than Nigerian who are already well represented in the programme; Asian: Indian, Bengali, Chinese and Vietnamese; Other smaller ethnic communities in the borough – for example Latin American);
  • Men;
  • People with complex needs (depression/anxiety).

Investing in models that break down barriers to social participation

  • Community connections;
  • Digital inclusion;
  • Community activities in spaces for all.


Current partners



Shoreditch Trust’s ‘Community Connectors’ work with local partners to reach socially isolated people aged 50 and over. The project will provide one-to-one sessions with older people to help them build confidence, motivation and understanding to engage with peers, local groups and social activities. The project will be delivered from accessible community spaces, complemented by home visits to suit the needs of the people accessing the service.


Groundwork London’s “Silver Connections – Making the Most of your Mobile” is a programme comprising a course of six weekly sessions designed to increase the confidence of people aged 60+ to use their smartphones to access information.

This is centred on researching, planning and then going on an outing in Hackney which they otherwise wouldn’t have known about.


Newham New Deal Partnership is delivering a service which builds older people’s confidence to get online. It will provide six to eight programmes of practical activities based on participants’ interests at venues around Hackney, as well as pre-programme taster sessions, and follow on support via e-newsletters, telephone advice and drop-in. 


The Friends of Woodberry Down Community Project delivers weekly community events for older people. It will allow older and younger people to come together, share food and enjoy a programme of activities at community venues in their local area.

Target group: Older people from BAME communities

Hackney Chinese Table Tennis Club (HCTTC) is a weekly table tennis club for men and women aged 50 and over, aimed at the Chinese communities (including Chinese Vietnamese) in Hackney. Through playing and socialising in a welcoming and supportive community-based environment regularly, participants will get to know each other and start to develop a community spirit, cohesion, and resiliency and build different social networks. By taking part in meaningful and regular activities the aim is that participants will in turn live a more enriched and active lives.

Santé Sage, meaning Wise Health, is aimed at members of the African Francophone communities of Hackney, aged 50+. It provides a weekly peer supported meeting over refreshments for Francophone elder. Its key focus is empowerment/ support into self-expression; navigating health systems; lifestyle; diet; exercise; health management; networking, friendships and community involvement.

Creciendo juntas / Crescendo juntas (Growing together) is a by and for elder Latin American women’s space. The service (a 2-hour weekly session) is a holistic, intersectional and intergenerational affair where participants can shape the activities being delivered and the topics that will addressed throughout the project. Women will share a journey, in which they can decide together the activity they would like to develop, ensuring that they know their decisions are important and that they can influence other spaces.

Mutlu Yaşam (Happy Living) project for Turkish and Kurdish elders works towards reducing for over 50s by providing recreational and social activities program offering weekly group sessions and up to 6 coach trips. They also run Weekly Tea Club with craft and musical engagements, in addition Gardening Sessions and Mosaic Art sessions.

Somali Elders Project is a weekly film and cultural club, involving food, recounting memories and developing mindfulness techniques in order to address the clear impact on mental health particularly concerning Somali women. The project will also organise quarterly trips to museums and other free cultural spaces.

Target group: Digital inclusion

Media group members receive training in computers, photography, interviewing and writing skills. As well as learning, members produce stories, photos, and audio for this website and for Hackney Senior magazine.

To find out more about this project, or make a referral, places email or call 020 7923 1962.