The Islington Giving campaign is inspired by the 2008 Invisible Islington report, commissioned by Cripplegate Foundation.
Invisible Islington shines a light on the poverty that exists in Islington, exploring the factors that make it so entrenched – ill health, debt, isolation and lack of opportunity.
It goes beyond the statistics and allows local people to tell their stories about the impact of poverty on their lives.
The report paints a picture of a divided borough in a divided city, where those living in poverty inhabit an invisible bubble – able to see but not reach the economic and social opportunities so conspicuously enjoyed by their neighbours.
You can read the full report here and read just a few of our residents stories below.
“I would prefer not to have debt but it’s inevitable when you’ve got four kids. It pays for clothes for them or a new cooker.” Woman with children
“I put aside my winter fuel allowance but every day is a rainy day on £119 a week. It is difficult to put aside some money.” Single man, aged 60
“I often have to use ATMs that charge because it is too much of a struggle to walk further to one that does not charge.” Man in his 30s/40s with ill health
“My life is going to school then coming home and cleaning, but I would need a well paid job to make it worth my while because I’d need some childcare. I get really miserable just keeping the house.” Woman with children
“There are things in this life that I can’t afford, like my children can’t do some activities because I can’t afford it. It is the way that I don’t have options. As a mum I would like to have the best for my kids and some times I feel frustrated about that.” Woman with children
“I’ve known the pub for years and the Guv, now, there is nothing like him in the world. He caters to his customers. On a regular basis at 10 o’clock he puts out a great big platter of sandwiches so no-one goes home hungry. It is very difficult to live on the money I get so you’ve really got to look at your pennies, so all the little extras like the pub all help because it papers over the cracks.” Single man, aged 60
“I don’t realise my hopes. I don’t find it easy talking about my future. I don’t look forward to another day so I don’t plan it. I don’t look forward at all.” Male in his 30s with ill health and mental health problems
“It’s so annoying when you fall down and you just can’t seem to get up. Now of course I worry about that all the time, so I go from each room holding onto doors and everything so I’ve got a hold on something. I wouldn’t be able to go anywhere if it wasn’t for this accessory. The pavements are so bad, the times I trip up and if I hadn’t got this I’d be on the floor. It does restrict where you’re going to go, I used to love going up the West End.” Woman in her 80s
“It’s lonely because now,with the needs I have, people tend to back off because no income’s coming in, you know, people they don’t want to know. I miss talking to people and being with people. I only go home and close the door and that’s it. The only person who is talking inside the room is the TV and that’s it – that’s frustrating.” Man in his 40s with stroke