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Staff Profile – Stephanie

Stephanie runs the London Plus Social Prescribing Network.

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Welcome to our staff profiles series, where we are celebrating the talented staff at London Plus! This week, meet Stephanie, our Social Prescribing Network Manager.

Hi Stephanie, can you tell us a bit about yourself?

Hi, I’m Stephanie. I have been working in the charity sector off and on for over 20  years. When not working, I have quite a few hobbies. For example, I’ve been doing Ballroom and Latin dancing for around 15 years! I have also done a lot of drama and local theatre, both as an actor and a director. I’m a classically trained singer as well, something I’m looking to get back into.

A while back I put all these things together and created an alter ego for myself – a French nightclub singer called Claudine! During lockdown I would entertain my friends by performing in a ‘virtual pub’.

Wow, quite the performer! Do you have any other fun facts?

When I first came to London I took a job as a ‘singing wench’ in Henry VIII’s court. I would entertain the tourists there, serving them food while singing and dancing. So yes, definitely a performance theme here.

Amazing! So, what do you do at London Plus?

I’m the London Social Prescribing Network Manager. For those who don’t know, social prescribing is a non-medical intervention for people who need help with their health.

My role involves supporting and advocating for voluntary sector organisations who deliver social prescribing activities in the sector. I try to influence the system to support the voluntary sector in their delivery of social prescribing activities. A big part of this is the network itself, which is a space for social prescribing activity providers to get support, information, and network with each other.

[You can find out more about social prescribing here]

What led you to this role?

I’ve always been interested in social justice and giving a voice to undervalued people. This led me to do a lot of work in the NHS and charities, running things like mental health programmes that focused on supporting communities. The role I’m in now really takes these skills and expands on them, including doing things on a more strategic level.

What makes you so passionate about this kind of thing?

Health is very important, and I’ve noticed that this area has become kind of stuck. I really want to help things to progress, and there’s a lot of opportunity in the voluntary sector. I’ve developed a real understanding of the health system, and our sector has so much potential in this area.

What do you enjoy about working at London Plus?

I always feel trusted to come up with suggestions and am supported to enable them to happen. A lot of care is taken to ensure none of us are micro-managed, and we are all involved in decision-making.

Our team culture is also just really supportive, we always help each other out. It’s a small organisation, so working as a team is really important, and I think we’re great at that.

Last question – what’s a hidden gem in London you think people should know about?

I actually have two. The first is the Curve Garden, which is just a beautiful space. It’s a big community-run garden that you wouldn’t even know is there. It has a café as well and is very tranquil and peaceful.

Then there’s the Shoreditch Treehouse, which is also fantastic. It’s this amazing, relaxed space where they do small concerts with very high-quality performances.

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A big thank you to Stephanie! Check out more staff profiles:

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