Oasis Community Learning is a proud member of the wider Oasis Trust group of charities and social enterprises. Working with and within some of the most vulnerable local areas, Oasis’s overall vision is for community. A place where everyone is included, contributing, and reaching their God-given potential.
We know that great schools are only sustainable within happy and healthy communities. In order to tackle the root causes of disadvantage we seek to ensure that school improvement and community development go hand in hand. In this way, the improvement is likely to be deeper, mutually supporting and long lasting.
Our academies are therefore just one part of Oasis ‘Hubs’, which provide wide-ranging and integrated services designed to meet the needs of local people. Our shared aim is to work with and alongside disadvantaged children, young people, whole families and members of the wider community, empowering them to transform their neighbourhoods into places that are safe, supportive and full of opportunity. We want to see no one excluded or isolated, inclusive communities where every individual is supported to thrive and flourish.
Characteristics of a Hub
Our Hubs are therefore actively engaged in creating neighbourhoods or places that are characterised by:
- High quality education – academies with exceptional teaching and learning environments and high progress and attainment levels
- Opportunity – in terms of employment, volunteering, local enterprise and access to appropriate housing provision
- Good, integrated and sustainable local services – whether delivered by Oasis or other local agencies
- Safety – low levels of crime, anti-social behaviour and resilience to people trafficking
- Good health – low levels of addiction, obesity and teenage pregnancy and good levels of life expectancy
- Cohesion and integration – communities where individuals feel included, connected and supported and in which they feel happy and proud to live
Oasis works in an integrated and holistic way, providing a range of mutually supporting services at a community or neighbourhood level.
In order to develop Hub priorities, Oasis’s Hub Councils seek to respond to the assets and needs of our local neighbourhoods, and community members are actively engaged in designing, delivering and leading services. We are committed to ensuring that Hub priorities are community-led, recognising that a person’s ability to lead change for themselves is the best way to support the development of deep transformation.
How does a Hub serve its community?
To be successful, Hubs have the freedom to respond to local needs and for local people to engage on their own terms. That means that all our Hubs are different, and at different stages of development.
Our oldest and most established Hub is in Waterloo in North Lambeth working in the community for over a decade. Hub activities currently incorporate:
- Two academy schools (Oasis Academy Johanna – a primary school where children make almost two years of additional progress in reading, writing and maths, and Oasis Academy South Bank – one of the best performing secondary schools in the country)
- A city farm
- Oasis Church Waterloo – a vibrant community church of around 300 members
- Sports programmes – working with vulnerable young people
- A foodbank and debt advice centre
- A youth mentoring project, working with the victims of gang violence at St Thomas’ Hospital A&E department
- The local library, delivered in partnership with Lambeth Council
- Hub Coffee House – a community café and community centre
- Adult learning programmes
- A range of large-scale community festivals each year
The Waterloo Hub has become a trusted partner of local government, community groups and businesses, and has increasingly become the community convenor for the area, collaborating with others from the statutory, not-for-profit, faith and private sectors.
But this is just one of our Hubs. Across the country our community Hubs are growing, linking with our academies to provide holistic support to all from Bristol to Manchester, Immingham to Kent. You can find out more about your nearest Hub by visiting your local academy's website, or more information about the wider work of the Oasis charities is available at https://www.oasisuk.org/.