Mon, March 02, 2020
Castlehaven is a special place because of the wonderful people who use our services and the tireless work of our staff and volunteers. Everyone has a story to tell and we want to hear yours. In this month’s People of Castlehaven we’ll be telling Ageactivity 60+ Project Manager Rosa Noel’s story.
Rosa is Camden born and bred. She loves the area as it's “vibrant, quirky and full of diversity “. Castlehaven has been a presence throughout Rosa’s life, in fact as an 11 year old she used to hide in our Des Res to smoke cigarettes, tut tut. Fast forward 9 years and Rosa and her 4 month old daughter became regular users of our under 5s drop-in. Rosa only has positive things to say about the service as it allowed her to “meet other mums and get out of the house”.
After Rosa had her second daughter she joined the Castlehaven team as an Admin Assistant for HELPS (the predecessor of Ageactivity 60+). Rosa worked her way up the ranks of Ageactivity 60+ and is now manager of Castlehaven’s largest project which boasts over 300 members. When asked to highlight the best thing about working for Ageactivity 60+, Rosa gushed about making a “real difference in so many people’s lives”.
Rosa goes on to tell the story of one particular member who credits Castlehaven for changing his life. Before joining Ageactivity 60+ this member had just retired and was going through a divorce. They walked past the Community Centre on several occasion but found the prospect of going in too overwhelming. After a good year or so he mustered up the courage to enter the building. Rosa gets emotional recounting this member’s experience, describing him as a “gentle and kind human”. Skip ahead 5 years and he now leads our walking club, volunteers regularly to help maintain our open spaces, and befriends local vulnerable older people, helping them access vital services like ours.
Rosa finishes the interview by lamenting cuts to important services that have resulted in the Camden community feeling “scared” about the future. Thankfully the borough is full of people like Rosa who devote their lives to helping others.