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Marie's story

Marie, a single mother with two children, became involved with Knees Up in Bromley by Bow. She and her neighbours worked with our staff to hold a street party in the area, and carried on their community activities with a family film night and an after-school club. 
Street scene
I saw the Knees Up worker, she was putting posters up and I asked her what she was doing. And she said she was doing a street party. To get everyone, all the neighbours, to mix with each other and to communicate a bit more, basically.  Because even though you might see them, you don't say hello every day.

I thought it was good really, cos there's a lot of people I don't see a lot on the estate and I think there should be more involvement. It is nice to know your neighbours.  There's a big Bangladeshi community and we didn't really mingle.  But even now, a year on, the kids still say 'Hello!  and play together. It's broke a bit of ice. 

I met new people as well. There was a family on the other side, she'd lived here for 20 years and I didn't even know. I mean I'd often seen her but I thought she was new to the scene. But she said no, she'd been brought up in the estate. And I said "well I've been here ten years". I said "I didn't even know you lived round here". So " that was good. And we're still friends now.

I grew up around the Boundary Estate, but I've lived in Bromley by Bow for a few years now. It's alright. The worst thing is that there's not much for the older kids to do. Aged 14 to 20, kids are sitting on the stairwells, obviously doing drugs, drinking. They're bored.  My boy's 17, he's going to the army.  People go to me "do you want him to?" Well, why not?  There's nothing for him here to do, he's bored every night.
 


 
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