H&F CAN (Community aid network)
H&F CAN is the volunteer community aid network launched by Hammersmith & Fulham Council to support residents in need during the coronavirus pandemic.
Support your neighbourhood, meet new people, share your skills.
Hammersmith and Fulham Volunteer Centre
Open Monday to Thursday 10am – 5pm and Friday 10am – 1pm
020 8741 9876
H&F volunteer centre a not-for-profit organisation committed to developing, supporting and promoting volunteering in west London. It also does a lot of work with unemployed people, helping with training, job searching and confidence-building. They work closely with local charities and community groups to find out what volunteering opportunities/jobs are available. HFVC is one of the most dynamic and versatile volunteer centres in the country and its philosophy is to view volunteering as a gateway to other opportunities.
If you have professional skills you want to put to good use as a volunteer, perhaps after retirement or when you're between jobs or for a trusteeship, Reach Volunteering could help. It is a free national self service online platform for people looking for volunteering opportunities and for charities to find people with skills.
Thank you to the growing number of people taking part in their local neighbourhood. Want to do your bit? Here’s how...
Set up a tenants’ or residents’ association
A tenants’ or residents’ association is a local group, made up of local residents (tenants and homeowners) who represent the interests of everyone living in a particular area or building. They aim to work together to represent the views of all tenants and/or home owners in their area to help make their neighbourhood a better place to live.
Tenants’and residents’ associations plays a large part in dealing with problems that people come up against, as well as organising things like social events. Residents’ associations are set up for everyone to join. Membership is open to all local residents.
Set up a Neighbourhood Watch
Neighbourhood Watch is a community-based initiative, run by its members, where residents, police and local authority work in partnership to reduce crime and the fear of crime. It is also about building community spirit and increasing neighbourliness. It is not about vigilantism and street patrols. Watches or schemes are normally street based and run by a volunteer resident acting as coordinator working in close liaison with local police officers.
- Hammersmith & Fulham Neighbourhood Watch
- National website for Neighbourhood Watch – use their new postcode search to find schemes in your area, community information, local contacts and crime data.
Go to your local Safer Neighbourhood meetings
The officers on your Safer Neighbourhoods team spend most of their time out on patrol in your neighbourhood, meeting the community and identifying and dealing with those crimes and issues you have told us cause you most concern. There are 16 safer neighbourhoods teams in our borough. These teams have been set up in partnership by the council and the Metropolitan Police Service.
Get to know your neighbours
Getting to know people who live nearby helps create a sense of belonging and shared identity in our local area. It also helps to strengthen connections and trust in our wider communities and contributes to a happier neighbourhood for everyone. Our lives are often so busy we don't get to connect with the people who live close to us. This is especially true in big cities, where everyone comes and goes at different times and new neighbours move in and out.
Yet research has found that that wellbeing is higher amongst people who have regular contact with their neighbours and that knowing people in our local area, even if it is just to say hello, can have a big impact on how secure and happy we feel about where we live.
Some things you can do to get to know your neighbours...
Nextdoor is a free, private social network for you and your neighbours, which is being used by communities across Hammersmith & Fulham. On Nextdoor you can share recommendations for traders, babysitters or restaurants, plan neighbourhood events, set up a book club, find out about community organisations in your area – and much more.
Organise a street party or fete in H&F
If you are thinking about organising a small event all you need to do is fill in one simple form.
Communities and local government street party guide
Streets Alive is a not-for-profit group that promotes community spirit at the street level through street parties and other neighbourly activities – see their Streets Alive street party guide.
Keep an eye on vulnerable neighbours
If someone has had an accident in their home, fallen and injured themselves or been taken ill, they may not be able to attract attention of neighbours, passers-by or people who call at the door. Always be on the look-out for signs that something might be wrong, especially when the weather is cold.
Here are some signs to look out for:
- milk not taken in late in the day
- newspapers stuck in the letterbox
- curtains drawn during the day
- lights burning during the day.
Love your neigbourhood
Request a new tree or plant a tree base
We highly value trees in the borough, and every season we plant more. Our tree policy is central to our commitment to make the borough a greener place and we have a team of officers dedicated to working on trees. Find out more about tree management.
Look after your local park
Interested in making a difference to a park in the borough then why not join or help establish a Park Friends group?
Report it – littering, graffiti, dog mess
Clean and tidy streets are very important in making our borough a pleasant place to live, work and visit.
Please help us to keep your streets clean – rubbish collection advice.
Keep Britain Tidy – guidance about littering.
Whether you want to report a problem or apply for something, use our Report It forms.
To report suspected fly-tipping, call 020 8753 1100 or email the Cleaner Greener team.
Residents can help to keep the streets of Hammersmith & Fulham cleaner than ever before by organising or taking part in a Capital Clean-up event. Now in its sixth year of helping Londoners take part in the maintenance of the places where they live and work.
Volunteer in our libraries
Find out about opportunities for volunteering in our libraries.
Do something for young people
Become a mentor
It is an opportunity to use your expertise to help unlock a person's potential and at the same time develop your skills, including communication and leadership. You’ll gain a sense of personal achievement and reward and understand more about the issues others face.
Mentors provide emotional guidance and a sense of continuity and stability, which may be lacking in the lives of their mentees. Through successful mentoring, constructive friendships are borne, in which mentees learn to trust and value their mentor. Meanwhile, they learn to develop essential social skills, recognise their own strengths, and grow in confidence.
It’s important to be friendly and approachable, while able to provide a patient, listening ear and balanced advice when necessary. Showing a strong interest in the mentee’s life and interests will also help to build up a valuable mentoring relationship.
Interested in mentoring a child? Find out more by visiting the Family Friends website.
Become a school governor
Becoming a governor is a rewarding way of making an important contribution to education. It can help you develop your existing skills and learn new ones. Anyone aged 18 or over can become a school or college governor. No specialist qualifications are needed and people from many different backgrounds volunteer for the role.
Enthusiasm, commitment and an interest in education are the most important qualities. In total there are approximately 300,000 governor places in state schools in England – the largest collective of volunteers in the country. They help guide the future of millions of school children. School governors perform the most important voluntary role in education.
Visit the GOV.UK website to find out more about volunteering as a school or college governor.
Become a foster carer
All sorts of people make good foster carers. The children we support come from many different backgrounds and we need foster carers to reflect the diverse needs of these children. Fostering provides a safe, secure and nurturing family environment, either short or long-term, and allows children to keep in contact with their own families if they wish.
Children come into care for a whole range of reasons, including a family member’s short-term illness or a parent’s depression or drug or alcohol misuse. Some children may have been abused or neglected. Foster carers can give families a chance to sort out their problems by providing children with a home and supportive family for as long as they need.
When a child is taken into care, the local authority becomes responsible for his or her welfare. Social workers then work with families to make the home a safe place for a child – with the aim that children and parents can be reunited.
Hold the council to account
If you think something has gone wrong at H&F Council, please let us know. We will aim to resolve your complaint at the first opportunity, but whenever this is not possible the council has a three stage complaints process.
Petition or question the council
We want to encourage residents and other interested people to participate as much as possible in the democratic process. There are several ways to do this at H&F including sending in petitions, organising a deputation, putting a public question at a council meeting and taking part in scrutiny meetings. Find out about taking part in the democratic process.
Comment on planning applications
Every member of the community has the right to comment on any planning application, and we take your comments into consideration when recommending the application for approval or refusal. Find out how to comment on a planning application.
Comment on local news stories
Keep informed and make your views heard. Find out how in the news pages on this website.
Comment on local issues
What do you think about – aircraft noise and Heathrow expansion, hospital closures, and more...? Have your say on local issues.