1 Month Streak
0 Month Streak
11 Month Streak
Tue 21st Nov at 6:45pm
Three litter hunters, in need of an adequate dose of rubbish, ventured out of Ealing Broadway and ran 3.75 km to North Acton. Christos, Steph and Kash followed the roads parallel to the Central line. They ran past West Acton station, after marvelling at the stunning neighbourhood along Queen's Drive and feeling like they ran into a 19th-century English countryside. The runners arrived at North Acton Square, in front of the tube station, where they met Madhan and Sevan. Madhan has been instrumental to the mission's success as he volunteered to transport the litter-picking equipment to the task start location - what a star! Sevan came to the session directly from the airport - that's an insane level of commitment!
The litter hunters (litchers?) wandered to an alleyway that runs along the Central line rail tracks, dividing Acton Cemetery into two. GoodGymers hadn't been on that pathway for a while, so it was abundant with cans and bottles. The team packed those into two transparent bags for recycling they had received from Elisabeth of Acton Litter Collective, the leader of Sunday litter picks at Acton Gardens. The remaining rubbish landed in three blue sacks given to GoodGym by the members of LAGER Can.
The GoodGymers emerged at Park Royal Road and, after dropping the bags at the neatest bin, made their way back to the North Acton station where they split again. The runners have proven they were more efficient than tube by arriving in Ealing Broadway before the rest of the team. They popped into the pub where the GoodGym Ealing Christmas Party will be hosted. Did you sign up already? In the meatime, check out the next week's group run - again, to Acton!
Mon 20th Nov at 6:00pm
Just before 6 pm Madhan and Kash reached the Salvation Army Fortress encircled by two queues of clients. Not getting a response to their knocks on the back door, they tried the front entrance (also barricaded before the opening hour) and waved to the Ealing Soup Kitchen volunteers inside. The GoodGymers were directed to the back door again and finally got in. Divya arrived on his bike just as the shift started and sneaked inside too.
"Who is on clothes today?" one of the volunteers asked.
"The GoodGymers!" Emma replied without hesitation.
Madhan and Divya were manning the menswear table and Kash was (wo)manning the ladies' section. The tables with garments and toiletries looked impeccable - almost luxurious - the result of the first shift's hard work!
Today's session featured attractions such as:
We are hoping to visit the Monday Ealing Soup Kitchen again in December before Christmas!
Tue 21st Nov at 6:45pm
Improve the footpath for commutersRead more
Sat 18th Nov at 1:00pm
When Auberon and Kasia came to Dean Gardens in Cultivate's Mystery Machine full of daffodil bulbs from Ealing Council, they couldn't know how many volunteers would show up at the Saturday afternoon planting event. Two ladies, Sarah and Mary, did not disappoint. Was that enough people to plant all the bulbs in two hours though? Hold tight!
Whoosh! A gang of six GoodGymers has been dropped by Destiny right in the middle of West Ealing's green space. Madhan, Harvey, Sevan and Kash arrived after a session to prepare the bedding and set up beds for a night shelter at Haven Green Baptist Church. Moona came all the way from East London to make another guest appearance at GoodGym Ealing.
Doreen, determined to show up no matter the weather, decided to make her volunteering debut at Dean Gardens today! ⭐
Doreen made a great start to her GoodGym adventure by stepping in for the first task of the session: raking the leaves to uncover the soil. Harvey was collecting and wheelbarrowing them out of the way.
The rest of the crew split into diggers and planters. The first group dug holes in the ground for the second team, whose task was to fit ten bulbs in each pit. When asked about the pattern of holes, Auberon opposed any approach other than organised chaos - GoodGym's speciality. 👌 The patches of flowers in the spring were supposed to give an impression of natural disarray.
After each cluster of bulbs was buried, Moona diligently fed the soil with bone meal. If you think the plants are vegan, think again! In case you never heard of bone meal, it is a mixture of ground animal bones and other slaughterhouse waste that provides phosphorus and calcium to plants, acting as organic fertiliser.
Having covered two locations under the trees at the far side of Dean Gardens, we moved to the last location - the familiar bed that GoodGym Ealing helped transform during a few Tuesday sessions, starting in September this year. We planted the remaining bulbs and raked the new layer of mulch to cover the soil. With no baby daffodils left, we were done ahead of time!
The most faithful companion of the Dean Gardens tasks in autumn is mud. Those who experienced MudGym at Tuesday lunchtime sessions will know what I am talking about! Some of us, like Moona and Doreen, came well-prepared, sporting proper boots! 🥾 The rest - running or marching straight from other tasks - happily goodgymmed in light running shoes. 👟 An additional task of scrubbing the soles guaranteed!
If a bit of mud doesn't scare you and you are looking for an activity that boosts your lunchtime, pop into Dean Gardens for a weekly Tuesday session with Cultivate London and GoodGym to improve the green space for the local community!
Sat 18th Nov at 11:30am
Harvey and I arrived *earlier and were catching up as it's been some time since I last saw him. He was saying it was 'his' church as the initials of the Haven Green church matched his name. Soon Kash and Sevan arrived with coffee in hand after completing a morning mission. We waited for Rohan, then dropped a message and went inside the church.
When we entered the large hall, we could see a few volunteers unloading the beds, bedsheets, pillows, and duvets, to name a few from the loft. A guy was taking out everything from the loft and passing over to the people via a ladder. Kash noticed that guy and said that it was Rohan. Harvey and I haven't met Rohan before so we couldn't recognize him. He was the first one to arrive as he arrived 15 earlier and jumped right into the task.
Yvonne asked us to make 16 pillow cases with each pillow case consisting of a duvet cover, a bedsheet, and a waterproof bed cover. She also asked to match the color/look if possible for aesthetic reasons. Sevan and I were on the pillow cover duty. We had to make 7 batches of them as the winter shelter will happen across 7 churches in Ealing and each church will have 16 sets of everything.
Harvey was folding the blankets and arranging them on his own. Rohan and Kash were unfolding and arranging the foldable beds. After an hour of dealing with beds, blankets, and pillows, Harvey decided to take a nap on one of the beds, and his wish was granted soon.
Yvonne, before leaving, asked us to do a quality check on the beds to see if they were fitted properly. Everyone enjoyed lying on the bed and verifying if the bed was sturdy enough as we don't want the guests to deal with broken beds and backs.
The team then walked to a coffee shop to warm themselves before covering their shoes with mud at West Ealing.
Tue 14th Nov at 6:45pm
After the downpour earlier in the day, the GoodGym Ealing Team were lucky to miss the rain at their group run. The usual runners: Sevan, Steph, Christos and Kash set off for a 3 km run from Bodyline in Ealing Broadway to South Acton. The gang might have dodged the rainfall but not the results of it. The conversation on the way to the task went like this:
"Look out for the puddle!"
"Puddle on the right."
"Oops! Sorry, did I splash on someone?"
Ok, we had more to chat about than bodies of water around Ealing Common. We overtook Madhan who led the solitary walk to Acton but we didn't manage to convince him to join the running group - maybe because we kept quite a good pace, so we had fewer seconds to explain how fabulous it is to run with us!
When we arrived at the school, we were surprised that it was full of children and parents!
"Is it okay to enter if there are kids still around?", pondered Kash.
"It's fine under supervision", said confidently Sevan.
"Not all of those children look like they're supervised."
"But WE are supervised by the task owner!"
The team then scrambled to find the task owner, Romina from Cultivate London who was hiding behind the shed, then appeared suddenly, sporting her stylish futuristic headlamp.
Romina showed us what was hiding behind moveable fencing at the schoolyard. A heap of bags with leaves... covered with more leaves!
"I'd like all those loose leaves to be in bags, and those bags on the top of the heap. How does that sound?" she asked.
It sounded like killing two birds 🐔🐔 with one stone: removing the loose leaves from the schoolyard, so the kids can safely use the space, plus preparing bags with leaf mulch to be used by Cultivate at their gardening sites. Oh, and the GoodGymers getting their workout! That's three birds then! 🐔🐔🐔
Steph and Sevan picked up rakes, buckets and bags. Shortly, they were joined by Madhan who just arrived after his long walk, and cyclist Divya, who returned after a deserved and much-needed break after smashing 200 good deeds. The team tried different approaches to bagging the leaves but the sweeping part was super smooooth from the start. They operated like a tennis court maintenance team!
"As promised, there's a task to smash things!" said Romina, "Do you remember those two cages we moved from across the road last summer?"
Yes, we did - and here is the report with photo evidence! Romina presented us with the well-known sledgehammer🔨 and asked who was this time closest to any milestone. As previously at Cultivate, Divya had the honour of wielding the sledgehammer, and last week Steph was the King of Spades ♠️, Kash suggested that Christos can have fun at tonight's task as he'd been super dedicated since he returned to GoodGym. Christos destroyed both containers and together with Kash, threw the debris into the skip, making sure the cages would rest in pieces!
Romina was impressed with clearing the area that had been full of leaves. She made sure that we left some heaps to collect by GoodGym Hounslow the next day.
The whole GoodGym gang headed to a chaii place 🫖 for hot beverages and chats about cooking rice techniques and the unexpected consequences of obtaining higher education qualifications. The night finished with the team getting back to Ealing Broadway and another obstacle run between the puddles.
Mon 20th Nov at 6:00pm
Help run takeaway service where homeless can get food and clothesRead more