Old is Gold

Engage is our exciting project for unemployed young people in Tower Hamlets in London. We support these young people to deliver their own community project – and provide a mentor to help them plan their futures. Rema talks about the fantastic recycling idea she came up with …     


My decision to take part in the Engage project stemmed from my love of volunteering and being involved in community events where people can really come together.

When I heard about Engage I thought it sounded like an unmissable opportunity. Through the programme, I developed the idea of launching a social enterprise where recycling can be implemented into fashion. The concept was to encourage people to make the most of the things they have. What I was hoping to achieve by the end of the project was to create awareness and confidence of re-using belongings.

So I organised a swap shop event in Tower Hamlets, where residents in and around the area were invited to bring and buy items.  During the planning stages of my project I was very nervous - I had no experience of managing a project in the past so it was a bit of a novelty for me. However, the great amount of support that was provided really helped me through.

My project plan changed from time to time as things did not always go to plan. Despite this the project turned out better than I initially expected which I was very pleased about.


I enjoyed the project as a whole, but what I enjoyed most was the support and guidance everyone was given.  Through Engage I have also been matched with a mentor. I wish to gain knowledge and skills from my mentor, learn from their experiences and develop my project into an established brand.