Happy National Volunteers’ Week!

We’re so grateful for our amazing team of Park Champions, who have volunteered over an incredible 76,000 hours of their time since 2014! They have helped over 38,000 Park visitors through the Mobility Service and have welcomed and helped over 253,800 from the Park’s Information Point since 2016.

The services we provide are key to an enhanced customer experience and whether it’s from the Information Point, through Mobility Services, guided tours or at events, we couldn’t do it without our volunteers! Our Conservation Park Champions are Biodiversity heroes and get their hands dirty improving the parkland and its habitats. This increases the Park’s wildlife and contributes to the Park looking great – Thank you!

It’s been such a pleasure to be able to stay in touch with so many Park Champions during these uncertain times and being able to continue seeing them (virtually) has made our day! They have inspired us by wearing their pink uniform at home, helping each other, sending us photos of their arts and crafts and so much more. Our week’s highlights are connecting with them all and seeing their smiling and friendly faces! We can feel their passion for the Park from across London and beyond and for this, a massive thank you to them all!

Tomorrow we’ll be raising a glass in honour of National Volunteers’ Week and to thank them for all their hard work, we invite you to do the same, and thank your local volunteers!

CAPRI is back!

CAPRI is back!

We are looking for volunteers to get involved with the CAPRI project.

Autonomous PODs will be trialled for use by the public between 9 and 20 March. The PODs are Westfield Technology Group built 4-seater electric vehicles that will carry members of the public on-demand on a pre-defined route. To access the services, members of the public will be able to request a trip at a manned stop along the route.

To get involved, sign up here.

Boxing Road to Tokyo

Boxing Road to Tokyo

Our Parklife is recruiting volunteers for an exciting event coming up onto the Park: Boxing Road to Tokyo.  

In March, more than 350 boxers from more than 40 countries will take part in the Boxing Road to Tokyo European qualifying event at the Copper Box Arena. Seventy-seven male and female boxers will secure qualification for the Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games. The competition is sanctioned by the IOC and will take place across eight men’s and five women’s weight categories. 50 qualification places are available for men and 27 for women.  

Volunteers are required to assist the arrivals and accommodation team as well as take on roles in sports information and spectator and venue services. Please apply here, stating the role and shifts you are interested in. 

Volunteer get-togethers

Our Park Champion Volunteers are the eyes and ears of the Park, and many of them are local residents who have seen the area change and evolve over many years. As the Park is such a dynamic place, changing all the time we like to ensure our volunteers are fully up to date with everything that’s happening.

Throughout the year we organise get-togethers for our Park Champion volunteers to hear directly from Park experts, local businesses and future partners. This is also a great opportunity for volunteers to meet socially and share their knowledge. You have to be a registered volunteer to sign up, so if you’re interested, complete the registration form here.

In 2016 we organised get-togethers with the following partners:

Laing O’Rourke – Here East

Lee and Stort – A boat trip on the River Lee

Phil Askew, LLDC – The Parklands

LLDC – Future Plans of the Park

The ArcelorMittal Orbit

The V&A

L&Q – Chobham Manor residential development

East Village

Career workshop

In January 2020, UEL/West Ham United Foundation students in sports management participated in a career workshop with the ENGIE Park team. This workshop allows students to have an insight into the world of Facilities Management including soft services, hard services, security, visitor services and events so that this can then be applied to their courses.

The students were then provided with a number of role-play scenarios set in our venues which aimed at getting students to think about Facilities Management and the many challenges faced on a regular basis. They were provided with briefings and tasked with creating innovative solutions to tackle real life operational challenges.

To arrange or enquire about this, please email: dwayne.joseph@engie.com

Our Park Champions & MLB Diamonds 2019 celebration event

It was a pleasure to host our annual celebration event on Thursday 26 September. 

It was a great evening that gave us the opportunity to say thank you to the hundreds of volunteers who have already contributed over 14,500 hours to the Park this year. We hope all Park Champions and stakeholders had a great time and we thank you all for coming!

It has been another fantastic year where the volunteers have welcomed and advised visitors, guided them through the Park both on foot and on the buggy, got their hands dirty creating wildlife habitats, monitored butterflies, helped keep the parkland tidy and supported over 40 events. The volunteers help has been essential to the Park and the good running of our services and we couldn’t have done it without them.

We are now looking forward to another exciting year in 2020! The East Bank developments will bring a number of new stakeholders and with the Tokyo Olympic and Paralympic Games coming up, the Park will host a number of exciting sporting event qualifiers. Once again, another year means the development of new exciting roles, fantastic events and millions more visitors to the Park. So, keep your eyes peeled for exciting new opportunities; there will definitely be something for everybody to get involved with. 

Congratulations to Edward on winning Volunteer of the year!

Park Champions have voted and Edward has been awarded Volunteer of the Year!

Edward has been a Park Champion since the very beginning and has contributed thousands of hours of his time to the Park. From being a Buggy Driver to a Community Guide, an Event Volunteer or a Team Leader, Edward’s passion for the Park transpires in all his roles. Always enthusiastic and ready to help customers and fellow volunteers alike, Edward is a real asset to our team and definitely deserves this recognition.

Congratulations Edward! It’s a real pleasure to have you in the team!

Congratulations to all our volunteers of the month who made up the shortlist for the Volunteer of the Year award:

  • Olive Wenborn
  • Janet Lowe
  • Neal Glucksmann-Smith
  • David Rowley
  • Maggie Mathison
  • Alan Stevens
  • Peter Barry
  • Angela Daniels
  • Lynne Ellis
  • Brigitte Glucksmann-Smith
  • Keith Gabriel
  • Edward Wingate

Our Biodiversity Champions were proud to receive the Volunteer Group of the Year award!

The Biodiversity Champions have made a hugely valuable contribution to the Park and the aims of the Biodiversity Action Plan. Our team of Photo Champions have been capturing the changing Park for the past few years, a historical record that has also helped us in managing and looking after the habitats. They have taken well over 2000 photos as part of the project! This year, we added a new team of champions to monitor butterflies – although this is a new group, they have worked hard over the summer months to collect data on the Park’s butterflies and have submitted hundreds of records so far. The Biodiversity Champions are a dedicated and enthusiastic team and winning group of the year is well-deserved!

MLB Gold Team

Over 300 volunteers were recruited and trained, ready to be deployed for the MLB event on June 28-30.

Across the weekend, volunteers from all backgrounds, with all types of skills and from all ages (11 to 73!) gave up over 5,700 hours of their time to enhance the customers journey and provide the unique American baseball experience.
And the winners were…the Record attendance Team and Team Leaders!

A team of MLB Diamonds have dedicated 34 hours of their time during the 3 event days, always ready to assist and sharing their enthusiasm and energy with customers.

The MLB Diamonds Team Leaders’ role was essential to the good running of the event and the volunteer programme. Whether in the London Stadium or on the last mile, team leaders looked after their team with energy and positivity, allocating breaks and ensuring their safety and welfare. On top of this, they also took on their MLB Diamond role of welcoming and assisting customers, ensuring that everyone had an outstanding experience for this historic event as the Boston Red Sox met the New York Yankees for the first ever Major League Baseball game taking place in Europe. Team Leaders ensured that their team members had the recognition they deserved and it’s our turn to ensure that they get theirs.

Thank you all for your hard work!

East Works Awards 2018

This year the London Legacy Development Corporation (LLDC) East Works Awards, (formerly the Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park Apprenticeship Awards) took place on 1st November 2018 at Here East on the Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park. It is an annual celebration of the diversity of talent, innovation and businesses on and around Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park who participate in the LLDC East Works programme.

The East Works programme is a social-economic programme that seeks to connect the people of East London to the different opportunites created in and around the Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park. With a focus on four themes; Work Skills, Working Capital, School Work and Work Places.

The evening began with a drinks and food reception for everybody to network and to showcase the brilliant case studies of the nominees. Taking a seat in the theatre hall, everybody was treated to a dance showcase by Kloe Dean, Myself UK Dance Company. With the evening presented by Sonita Alleyne and Jone da Cruz, a former apprentice on the park who worked his way up to site manager for construction company.

The highlight of the evening was our very own Ricky Quy who was victorious and came away with the coveted Individual Achievement of the Year award. Ricky began his journey back in November 2017 on the Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park where he completed a short work trial as a Cleaning Operative at the London Aquatics Centre where he demonstrated a dedication to completing his role to the highest standard which led him to secure a full-time position on the Park. Prior to this role Ricky had suffered from anxiety and a lack of confidence which had stopped him from working in the past.  Groundwork and ENGIE  continue to work closely together to support Ricky in his role and demonstrates that he understands the demands of the role, asks lots of questions and is now a ‘go to’ member of the team who colleagues depend on and respect. He is reliable, committed and a real credit to a team that works incredibly hard to keep one of the most iconic venues in the Park spotless!

Ricky is one of 250 people who have started work through Able Capable Employed (ACE).  Groundwork London is hoping to support a further 600 people into work through the programme. ACE provides tailored employment brokerage for individuals living with a disability or long term health condition. Each person works with an employment coach who provides specialist advice, wage subsidies and job matching.

ACE  is funded by Building Better Opportunities (BBO). Building Better Opportunities brings together funding from the Big Lottery Fund and the European Social Fund (ESF).

If you are an employer who would like to talk to us about offering ILM job opportunities or an individual who is looking for support to get into work, please contact the ACE team at Groundwork London on 020 7922 1230 or email ace@groundwork.org.uk

Ricky Quy – Winner of the Individual Achievement of the Year 2018

Adam Mitton (ENGIE), Ricky Quy (Winner), Graham Parry (Groundwork)

The evening ended in all the individuals who have taken part in the East Works programme presented with a Making It Happen award. In recognition of their efforts and commitments over the past year. They all represent the best of what East London has to offer.

Making It Happen Winners (Left to Right); Aimee O’Connor, Ricky Quy, Issahaku Wuni, Joel Brittain

Here is the full list of winners:

Apprentice of the Year: Jack Connolly

Individual Achievement of the Year: Ricky Quy

Intern/Trainee of the Year: Michelle Nyachuru

Employer of the Year: The Camden Society at Union Kitchen Café, Timber Lodge

Innovation of the Year: STEP

Excellence in Diversity and Inclusion: The Camden Society at Union Kitchen Café, Timber Lodge

LLDC Ambassador Award: Lianne Peterkin

Entrepreneur of the Year: Johnson Wong

Education Partnership of the Year: Class Of Your Own

Making It Happen Partnership of the Year: Flipside


Our Annual Park Champion Celebration 2018!

This year over 80 Park Champions and Stakeholders came together for our Annual Celebration of our Park Champions at The Timber Lodge on 11th October 2018. It was an amazing evening consisting of speeches from stakeholders, awards, food and drink to celebrate all the amazing hours that the Park Champions have invested in the last year.

In 2018, volunteers have dedicated over 10,000 hours this year. This was achieved through a number of ways from welcoming guests at the information point, the running of the mobility service across the park, educational visits, community guiding, conservation works and a vast number of events throughout the year – including Beyoncé, The Rolling Stones, West Ham United, London Lion matches and much more!

We are sure that 2019 will be another exciting year for our Park Champion Volunteers continuing the great work connecting the local community to the park and providing support for the thousands of visitors the park receives each year whether it be at concerts, sport events, school visits or the mobility service.

Park Champion Celebration 2018

And it ‘s Bronze, Silver and Gold to the Park Champions!

Gold, Silver and Bronze pins were awarded to those volunteers who have dedicated over 50 hours (Bronze), 100 hours (Silver) and 150 hours (Gold) in 2018. It is our way of saying thank you for all the hard work and effort the volunteers put in all year round rain or shine!

Bronze Pins Awardees

Silver Pin Awardees

Gold Pins Awardees

Volunteer of Year goes to….Hilary Victor!

As voted by our Park Champions Hilary sweeped to Victor(y) to claim Volunteer of Year.

Hilary Victor, Park Champion Volunteer of the Year

Hilary has already volunteered over 400 hours this year and has been involved in a range of roles. Hilary’s enthusiasm is incredible and makes her not only a fantastic team member but also a very knowledgeable guide for Park visitors.

Congratulations to all that were shortlisted for the award:

  • Hilary Victor
  • Jenny Marshall
  • Gary Lipson
  • Nick Lane
  • Ben Waite
  • Pat Cutler
  • Maggie Mathison
  • David Lomath
  • Ray Ellis
  • Alison Cowie
  • David Pearlman
Volunteer Group of the Year winner: Team Leaders

Whilst it was a close call this year between all our finalists, the Team Leaders have been and continue to be an essential aspect to the programme. From being a great help to the Information Point Duty Managers or the go between for event organisers and the volunteers. The Team Leaders are leading by example in everything they do and have gained their team’s respect. Always helpful, positive, professional and knowledgeable, they are a real gift to the programme.

Team Leaders, Volunteer Group of the Year

Congratulations to all that were shortlisted this year:

  • Community Guides
  • Team Leaders
  • London Lions Team
  • Buggy Drivers
Partner of the Year Winner: International Quarter London

Park Champions have been delivering tours for International Quarter London since October 2017. First welcoming Transport for London employees onto the Park with a weekly 45 min lunch time tour of the South Park, Park Champions have continued this service for the Financial Conduct Authority and Unicef this Summer. Over 200 employees have attended these tours and the feedback we’ve received has been great!

Our Parklife has also worked with IQL to activate the gardens with activities for their tenants, both employees and residents. Hundreds of flowers and herbs were planted as part of the workshops delivered.

IQL, Partner of the Year

A big thank you to all partners shortlisted at this year’s event:

  • London Stadium 185
  • International Quarter London
  • London Lions Basketball Club

We look forward to seeing everybody again next year!

Our Parklife Highly Commended at the 2017 Business in the Community Responsible Business Awards

BITC Responsible Business Awards 2017 Photos: Alastair Fyfe. fyfephoto.com email: alastair@fyfephoto.com
BITC Responsible Business Awards 2017
Photos: Alastair Fyfe. fyfephoto.com
email: alastair@fyfephoto.com

We are delighted to announce that Our Parklife has been awarded a Highly Commended Award in the The Experian Award for Building Stronger Communities category at the Business at the Community  Responsible Business Awards Gala last night. The Award recognises Our Parklife’s commitment to being a catalyst for local regeneration in East London; connecting local communities and people to the Park through employment, volunteering, training and service provision.

Now in their 20th year, the Awards champion the most inspiring businesses who are making a difference by taking action to build more inclusive workplaces, stronger communities and tackle our biggest environmental challenges.

Wilfrid Petrie, CEO, ENGIE UK said: “The Our Parklife model of private, SME and third sector partnership was a key pilot project for ENGIE to trial a new way of working that not only brings meaningful benefits to the business but also real social value to the communities in which ENGIE and our customers operate. The success of the initiative has seen us look to replicate the model in a number of communities across the UK as we work towards leaving a lasting positive social and environmental legacy.”

You can see a full list of all the Highly Commended finalists here: http://awards.bitc.org.uk/home-page/highly-commended

We are accredited!

On 5th May, we found out that Our Parklife was successful in gaining the Investing in Volunteers (IiV) Accreditation – the UK quality standard for best practice in Volunteer Management.

This comes after over a year of hard work to get all the documentation and evidence in place, demonstrating the amazing contribution that you Park Champions make on the Park. From Customer and Mobility Services, Conservation and Biodiversity, Events, Mobile Garden, Community Guiding, Orchard Leaders, Careers days, and all the other wonderful requests we get! Our team and partners try their best to provide a rewarding, well managed, fun and dynamic programme.

Throughout the two day assessment over 30 volunteers were interviewed from all parts of the programme as well as staff and Our Parklife Board members. Feedback was glowing, and we couldn’t be prouder of our team of volunteers. We wanted to thank you all as Park Champions for your passion for the Park, enthusiasm and energy. Thank you also for taking the time to provide your feedback to us, it is really important as we want to develop a programme that is exciting, engaging, interesting and fun for you.

Last year you gave up over 13,700 hours of your time on the Park. AMAZING!
We look forward to a busy future on the Park in 2017 and beyond!

Come and join us on Friday 2nd June at 5pm when we will be installing the plaque at the Information Point. To sign up, please visit: http://volunteers.queenelizabetholympicpark.co.uk/vk/volunteers/my_opportunities_info_ur.htm?PID=10027263
champ-007IiV logo