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It’s all about Community

Amelia Poamz has spent much of her time in community facing roles, advocating for social issues. Her background in performing arts has given her skills in public speaking, group workshop facilitation and creatively engaging audiences.

Housing: Amelia spent some time working with Shelter, housing charity after her own issues with housing. Amelia first curated and hosted an event for them raising awareness of youth homelessness. Curating a night of live performances, speeches and joy to create an environment where people felt safer to speak about their housing concerns. Amelia went on to speak at a few events for Shelter and even visit schools to raise awareness of homelessness and beat some of its misconceptions.

Domestic Abuse: One of Amelia’s proudest moments was being part of the UK’s first Domestic Abuse Commission. London’s borough of Barking and Dagenham has the highest police reported cases of domestic abuse. The council set out to change this and funded the Domestic Abuse Commission. Amelia was brought on as the community engagement officer working alongside national experts to feed into this massive research piece that would inform the council what steps need to be taken in order to create a borough that recognises domestic abuse and doesn’t tolerate it.

Amelia spent just over a year talking with everyone in Barking and Dagenham’s community, from schools to police officers. She brought together survivors in the borough to meet with regularly to discuss the progress and findings of the report.

During this time she has built the skills and knowledge to go into schools and run workshops around healthy relationships and domestic abuse and in future wants to continue doing this.

The Arts: Amelia most recently was community partnerships manager at The Barbican, Europe’s largest arts centre. Art is for everyone and should be accessible to everyone but also reflect our beautifully diverse world. Amelia worked with the Barbican’s community partners in producing events with them, having them in the centre regularly to run workshops, take up space and accessing gallery exhibitions. Working with people with lived experience of homelessness, seeking asylum in this country, people with mental health illnesses and people marginalised in society. She recently produced The Barbicans Community Partnerships Panel Discussion, Can We Be Artists, a panel discussion curated by Headway East London and other art industry professionals. It was recorded live, you can listen here.

Amongst this Amelia was involved in setting up The Barbican’s employment resource groups for staff supported by the anti-racist work going on at the barbican. Amelia made sure that Wellbeing and Access was included in the structure of running these groups and continues to be involved in anti-racism work.

Schools and Young people: Amelia has been invited into schools to run dynamic workshops with young people and speak at their events. Topics ranging from women empowerment, career advice, homelessness, healthy relationships and some poetry performances. Amelia loves working with young people as she remembers vividly the support and guidance she received in her younger years shaped her life’s direction.

Amelia is currently freelancing, running workshops, hosting music gigs and more!