Organisations we love

Otesha Canada
This is where it all started, folks. The Otesha Project was originally dreamed up by Jess and Jocelyn, two Canadians who threw all of their creativity, energy and boundless enthusiasm into creating this amazing experiment in social change. Did I mention that they’re also really really ridiculously good-looking and that they bake a mean vegan chocolate brownie?

We like Bikeworks, and not just because of their really cool modified bikes. This community cycle organisation in East London does cycle training, bike recycling and all-ability modifications. They also provide training and employment for young people in Tower Hamlets and Hackney.

UK Youth Climate Coalition
We’re proud of our history with this amazing coalition of young people from around the UK who’ve come together to take action on climate change, so that we can build the clean, equitable and green-job-filled future we want to see.

Magnificent Revolution
In the interest of full disclosure, we should mention that Otesha’s very own Barbora Patkova founded this collective from Cambridge, which started out as the Magnificent Revolutionary Cycling Cinema. Barbora and a few clever friends discovered a way to pedal-power a sound system and projector, and they haven’t looked back. In fact, they’ve been cycle-powering everything they’ve come across ever since.

The Centre for Innovation in Voluntary Action was founded in 1995 to develop, pilot and fund new ideas for addressing social problems. CIVA helps exciting new social enterprises get set up. They also helped Otesha get started back before we had a bank account or charity number of our own.

London Cycling Campaign
Great organisation working to make London a world-class cycling city. They publish a bi-monthly cycling newsletter, administer small grants to community-based cycling projects and advocate for better services for cyclists on behalf of their more than 10,000 members.

ShareAction was originally launched in 2005 as the FairPensions campaign to improve corporate behaviour through Responsible Investment. They aim to mobilise the financial power of UK pension investments to create change: as major shareholders in UK companies, pension funds have enormous power to improve corporate behaviour on the environment and human rights. Today, ShareAction is recognised in the UK as the leading NGO that monitors and engages with the investment industry.

FoodCycle combines some of our favourite things – free food, pedal-powered transport, projects led by young people, and giving back to the local community. Especially the free food bit.

The Urban Orchard Project
The Urban Orchard Project,  began with a passion for trees and food.  It is a fresh initiative promoting orchards and fruit trees in Britain to plant and harvest apple, pear and plum trees all over the British cities, and help us all to rediscover the pleasure of eating home-grown fruit.

The People’s Kitchen*
The People’s Kitchen aims to provide food for the people, by the people. They are a community enterprise that uses food surplus to provide affordable meals as a means to build community. The model of salvaging food waste, using volunteers to prepare a sumptuous feast and asking for donations only from the hungry masses has created a growing movement, which continues to gather pace.

UpCycle is a project which supplies creative and engaging waste management solutions to festivals.  This includes a team of volunteer Eco-Rangers who work to engage the public in the complex issues surrounding waste and recycling.  They also reclaim whatever waste materials they can (especially those that do not recycle well) and recreate something beautiful, or functional  through their ‘upcycling’ station The ExChange.  The beauty of the organisation is that they try to remain relentlessly positive and never to make people feel guilty, only inspired to do their part and help keep the earth clear of our waste.

Roll Up*
Roll Up are a collective of trained cycling instructors and ride leaders who coordinate led-cycle rides from major UK cities to UK festival sites. They like to think of ourselves as a pedal powered party!

GreenSpace Community Gardens*
GreenSpace is a series of community gardens across Hampshire; encouraging creative use of outside space and promoting sustainability where possible.  It began as a creative community allotment project based that saw unused pieces of land attached to Art Galleries or Museums and turned them into ‘living Art Works’.  The concept of GreenSpace is a simple one; A garden or growing space where the outdoors intertwine becoming a creative and inspiring place for the community to enjoy.

Combe Haven Defenders*
The Combe Haven Defenders are local people, determined to prevent the environmentally disastrous white-elephant that is the “Bexhill-Hastings Link Road” from devastating one of Hastings’ and Bexhill’s most amazing natural treasures. They demand an affordable, sustainable transport system for their area, that improves the quality of all our lives without costing the earth.

now>press>play creates and delivers educational silent discos that bring the curriculum to life and send children on an educational adventure they’ll never forget.

The Bike Project are a team of volunteers working to refurbish second-hand bikes that have been donated to the project. These bikes are then given to destitute refugees and asylum seekers, facilitating them access to resources that can help lift them out of poverty. Additionally, they run a series of bike fixing workshops for anyone keen to volunteer, gain new skills and meet new people.

workshop 44 is the place to be.  Not only is it Otesha’s home, we host the space for the local community; welcoming in residents who want to use computers and resources and running workshops in the evenings. Pop along and say hello!

*We are pleased as punch that our very own Alumni are an integral part of each of these organisations.