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Jenni Steele – Community Leader on the Rise

Steele - Rising community leader

Jenni Steele, OBV graduate, Creative Director of Lioness Ladies Woman and Family Empowerment Support Network, model, and full time mum, has recently been unanimously voted in as Chair of Bellingham Safer Neighbourhood Team (SNT).

It was while on OBV’s Lewisham Civic Leadership Programme in December 2009 that Jenni attended a Safer Neighbourhood Panel meeting, and decided she wanted to become more involved in the organisation.

Jenni initially joined the SNT team to gain more information about her community and why there were low numbers of young mothers, black women, and young people participating on the board. She wanted to empower people-and now is doing just that.

Speaking to OBV about why she joined the SNT, her recent appointment and what she hopes to achieve she said:

“At the moment I am working with other organisations with the same vision on community cohesion and empowerment so that more diversity is embraced on all levels, and also so that more community committees involve younger people as they are the future leaders.

We need their input when certain decisions are being made. More shadow programmes are in the pipeline for parents and young people to attend.”

The Neighbourhood team that Jenni now heads works in partnership with Spiderweb solutions, Young women’s initiatives, and Lewisham Young Women’s Resource Centre.

Her achievements to date are proof that with talent, hard work and determination positive strides can be made to make sure that communities are safer, and united with common goals. Keep a close eye on Jenni, she’s a future leader in the making.

By Richard Sudan

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