A lot has happened since I last wrote a blog in October following the Queen’s death.
First and foremost, we said goodbye last week to our colleague Susanne Ollig, who has been our Community Development Executive since May 2016 shortly before we launched Wimblecomm.
In the six and half years since we set up Wimblecomm the site has developed considerably and much of the credit for that is down to Susanne who has got to know many of our members and partners over the years, sharing events and information, setting up the jobs / volunteering section, posting stories and assisting venues and groups with developing their on-site presence. She also helped set up out online connect sessions and recently organised an in person session and had others in the pipeline.
Susanne was also key in helping develop our social media presence with Genevieve who left last Spring and has worked closely with our website developer Tim Martyn throughout her six and a half years to help make Wimblecomm what it is today.
Susanne is moving on to work full time as an HR Officer at Battersea Dogs and Cats Home so won’t be far away and will I’m sure keep in touch with many of you.
She will undoubtedly leave a huge gap to fill but we are pleased to announce that we have recruited a new part time staff member who has initially joined us on a temporary basis, Ruth Elora.
During the last week Susanne has been busy doing a handover to Ruth and introducing her to several people. Ruth lives in neighbouring Wandsworth but lived in Merton for several years as a child and knows the area. She looks forward to connecting with you in the coming weeks.
Since I last posted on the site, we held a successful AGM at the Polka theatre in December and were pleased that a large number of our members and partners were able to join us for a tour of the Polka facilities as well as getting an opportunity to hear about our work over the year and network with one another. The minutes from the AGM can be found here: [LINK].
We also decided to hold a strategy workshop with a core group of our partners and members to help decide on the way forward for the charity given the juncture we were at. This was held last week at the William Morris Rooms and was facilitated by former CEO at Love Wimbledon, Helen Clark Bell.
As noted previously Jackie and I have now contributed many volunteer hours towards the WCA (and the wider community) since we first got involved in 2012 and we felt it was important to take stock of where we are. We also set up a survey towards the end of last year which we distributed to our members and partners to help with that process.
Our thanks to those of you who have responded to the survey and to the attendees at the workshop last week. Your valuable input will be considered by the trustees in the coming weeks and we will be posting the outcome of our deliberations in the near future.
I also have to announce a piece of sad news that Jil, my wife and I have recently separated. Many of you will know Jil from her various roles including her work with South Park Gardens, Fayre and Square and more recently her work with the Liberal Democrats having been elected on to the Council last May. This is a difficult time for both of us and for our son Alexander who has recently graduated and is now volunteering locally at the Polka amongst other things.
I wouldn’t normally share personal news like this, but we are a small team at Wimblecomm so please bear with us whilst we go through this challenging period of transition.
But to leave things on a positive note I’d like to post our huge thanks to you Susanne, from all of us at Wimblecomm, for all your hard work over the years. You will be missed. Good luck with the new job. And welcome Ruth to Wimblecomm! We hope you enjoy working with us and connecting with the wonderful people here in Merton.