Songololo Feet is a hands on organisation. We teach different methods of textile-printing, for example potato printing, aluminium foil printing and silk screen printing etc.
We work with everyone from children to older people, women, refugees and youth across London, though our focus is in Hackney.
We run workshops in:
- Hackney City Farm
- School/pre-school (including inclusion units)
- Community Centres
- Youth Centres
- Refugee organisations
- Women’s groups
We have been active in schools and complement the teaching curriculum by developing hand-eye co-ordination and building on spatial and mathematical knowledge.
Our community projects encourage skills exchange and cultural diversity. We build confidence and morale in people so they can increase their opportunities for employment, learn new skills and have fun.
Our mission statement expresses our beliefs and values as follows:
“Songololo Feet is a unique concept to engage people of all ages and cultures, allowing learning to take place through the experience of achievement, the knowledge of African printing techniques and the establishment of a printed garment”. We work to facilitate self-confidence and empowerment in whoever participates in our workshops and promote recycling principles as far as possible. The inks we use are toxic free and natural.
Songololo Feet was first established in October 2003. The organisation began to seek funding at end 2004.
The following is a brief outline of our past and present work:
- March - July 2005: CEN “Exchanging Traditions” : working with BME women at Hackney City Farm
- March –July 2005: LNF “Nanoo Feet” project: working with Year 4 children from Sebright School in Haggerston, showing learning can take place in an out of school environment.
- Awards for All: Holiday project August 2005, working with local youth in Haggerston area, painting a mural in Hackney City Farm’s seating area.
- July 2005 during “Adult Learning Week”, contracted to run workshops at Surestart Queensbridge, Thomas Fairchild School, and work with Orthodox Jewish Women in Stamford Hill.
- In 2006, Songololo Feet conducted pilot projects at Gascoyne and Pembury Estates with young people, customising clothing.
- In Nov 2006, Songololo Feet were commissioned to run a series of workshops with BME refugees, designing a logo for the Drug Action Team by Local Network Fund.
- One-off workshops in Early Years’ playgroups in council estates and after school clubs (e.g. Marquis Estate in Islington, Bath House nursery etc.)
- Workshops with Hackney Women’s Forum at One Love Hackney and Springfield Peace Festivals.
- We have recently run 3 more projects; Two of the projects are funded by CIP and involve work with London Fields School Year 3 children and with Somalian and Asian older people, designing headscarves. The third project is LNF funded and a continuation of our pilot from last year – customising young people’s clothing at Pembury Estate and emphasising peace among local youth. These ended in July 2007. We have continued working with young people in Pembury, Morningside and Kings Crescent estates thanks to LNF funding and are currently in the process of extending our work to cover furniture making and sculptures using newspaper and metal wires.
- In 2007, thanks to Team Hackney funding, Songololo Feet continued working with young people in 3 Hackney inclusion units, where we continued using recycling principles to make artefacts and furniture using newspaper (the STIXX technique)
- Through 2008 and to the present day Songololo Feet textile printing and recycling projects have continued in a variety of settings: Grazebrook Primary School in Hackney, Eldon Junior School (Edmonton), The Learning Trust (in Hackney Park Programmes with Surestart, as well as during Black History Month and Family Learning Week, ESOL classes at Oxford House (Bethnal Green), Sanctuary Housing and in Peabody-run estates in Hackney and Deptford. Projects have included working with young people, customising young peoples’ clothing and working alongside the school curriculum to commemorate particular topics in the syllabus.
- Refer our website …………for our profile, work and upcoming workshops.
Our future plans include getting funding for a mobile unit, which would facilitate our work on different council housing estates with young people. We aim to train youth who have participated in past workshops to play a more significant role in teaching others. Ultimately our aim with this work in the youth sector is to facilitate cohesion. We would like to see gang rivalry with E5,E8,E9 become a thing of the past. To achieve this we are working to become a company limited by guarantee and become an accreditation centre of learning. We have given ourselves till 2010.
Songololo-Feet intends to go into charity status before 2010.