I am not a member of a green or eco grassroots organisation. I came to Greenhavens through my work promoting green spaces, outdoor pursuits and volunteering as a way to help our patients’ physical and mental well-being. I work closely with the Lewes House Garden Group , the Railwaylands Well-being walking group and have been trying to help set up Mens Sheds groups in both Lewes and Newhaven. I live in Seaford and I am a member of FOBS – Friends of Bishopstone Station and Seaford Swifts. I really believe in social prescribing rather than always relying on medication for our patients. Used in conjunction we can help so many more people. Over the last few years we have seen a huge increase in loneliness, bereavement , mental health and obesity to name a few issues. Also for those living with dementia and their friends and family it is so important to be able to take part in activities that are both social and physical. I work for Foundry Healthcare Lewes, GP surgery and my role is Dementia and Frailty Care Coordinator.
Lewes Mens Shed
I have been a volunteer (and currently Chairperson) of NIPPERS. This is a registered Charity established in 1973. I have been involved since 1978 and volunteer there daily. NIPPERS offers out of school activities for children and young people aged 3-17. We encourage outdoor activities and supporting their environment. I am a Forest School Leader and work for a local training organisation offering accredited training in Forest School to level 3. We currently have 2 Forest School Leaders (myself included) and 2 in training. For many years we have been based near Castle Hill in Newhaven, but more recently have moved to East Side, which is an area of planned re development.
Trustee NIPPERS Out of School Club. Forest School Trainer and Leader
Lesley BonifaceActing Secretary
I have a passion for green spaces and nature and improving Newhaven’s biodiversity through planting. I have no formal training but I am keen to learn. With the help of Greenhavens Network I led an 800 tree planting event in November 2019. A founding member of the Friends of Riverside Park & Valley Ponds, Newhaven and Chair for the last 6 years and Committee Member for Egrets Way Project. Chair of Greenhavens until April 2021 I’ve been a Newhaven Town Councillor since 2019 and Town Mayor 2021/2022. Member of the Environment & Amenities and the Regeneration & Strategic Committees at Newhaven Town Council.
Chair of Friends of Riverside and Valley Ponds. Newhaven Town Councillor, Mayor of Newhaven, Committee Egrets Way Project
George TaylorCommittee Member – Co-Opted. Advisor – Website, Comms and IT
My background and experience sits with IT, media, videography, social media, coordination and fundraising. I’m keen to work on moving the amazing Greenhavens forward whilst building volunteer sustainability and engagement. I’d also like to see how Greenhavens can work more with local authorities so we can continue to deliver great things. I have a strong passion for wildlife and nature and currently work for the RSPB as a Membership Fundraiser
Newhaven Town Councillor, vice chair of Newhaven and Seaford Refill
Eve MogridgeCommittee Member
I am a playworker and teaching assistant with a passion for gardens and the environment. I have been involved in forest school projects and love growing my own veg, with sustainability and organic methods in mind.
On moving to Newhaven I was keen to get involved with other like-minded people. This is how I found Greenhavens Network and was particularly inspired by the wilder gardens project. I’ve loved concentrating on my own garden which brings me so much happiness and well-being, a little place of solace from the busy world. I’m looking forward to being more involved, connecting with people in the community to learn from and inspire others. I believe that through small changes in our local spaces a bigger impact can be had on a global scale. Instead of being overwhelmed by environmental issues I’m choosing to take action on my own doorstep, and believe in the power of inspiring others to do the same.
Greenhavens Network Co-ordinators
Jessie RodriguesWilder Gardens Co-Ordinator
I have been working in Sussex in conservation and community development for over 20 years after studying Ecology and Conservation at Sussex University and training as a ranger with East Sussex County Council. I first met many of the Greenhavens volunteer groups when I worked at Community Ranger for Lewes District Council and am proud to have been part of Greenhaven’s from the beginning. I have ten years’ experience of working as a ranger and ten years specialising in nature-based learning, Forest & Beach School and community engagement. I have a passion for protecting wildlife and creating nature networks. I was co-ordinator for the Wilder Gardens project and thrilled to see so many people gardening for wildlife, learning to survey their area and contributing to national surveys.
Miriam ThundercliffeNetwork Co-Ordinator
I have been living in Seaford nearly all of my life and am passionate about its local community and preserving local green spaces. I am a mum of two and see how nature has always given me and my family a sense of well-being and joy.
I have a genuine love of people and my work background has included working in behavioural units, dementia care, teaching and I enjoyed being a massage therapist for 15 years.
I am very interested and committed in creating green spaces that are accessible to all, helping combat the isolation so many feel today.
I have a company called Roots Rising that is going to open community spaces for growing and creating beautiful spaces for the community to meet. Developing sustainable areas that decrease our carbon footprint, increase biodiversity and offer a safe place for all.
Greenhavens Network Advisors
Steven Teale Advisor – Ecology, Events
I have up to 15 years’ experience (as an amateur/volunteer) of the following:
Studying butterflies, moths and other wildlife. Biological recording and sharing records with the Sussex Biodiversity Record Centre. Guiding walks (including for Butterfly Conservation, SCDA and Lewes District Council). Leading wildlife-events (moth-trapping, bug hunts, rock-pooling, one-off events such as Nature Cadets with Newhaven Fort). Performing and assisting with baseline wildlife surveys (for Lewes District Council and wildlife groups). Designing survey strategies. Land management for conservation (advisory and practical work). Committee member of the Friends of Castle Hill LNR since 2005 (Recording Officer since 2017). Wildlife writing, blogging and ‘bio-tweeting’.
Committee member Friends of Castle Hill Reserve, Lewes District Council Employee
Paula Woolven Advisor – Funding and General
Havens Community Hub puts the needs of the community first. Providing personalised support to good causes and creating partnership projects to meet established community need. We are committed to supporting good causes to fulfil their potential, improve skills and to succeed in meeting the needs of the community.
CREATING – Partnerships and Projects To Meet Established Community Need.
SUPPORTING – Good Causes To Become More Sustainable.
CONNECTING – Volunteers To Appropriate Opportunities.
Havens Community Hub are members of 3VA, FSI, SEUK, NCVO, Locality, AoC & the Plunkett Foundation.
We are happy to support Greenhavens Network in whatever way our skills and resources could be best used. As well as supporting local non-profits we also administer for Havens Community Cars and Havens Happy Clubs – for community transport and community activities for older people. During Covid-19, we have also stepped in to support FareShare perishable food distribution to prevent food waste and creation of landfill emissions as many groups who would normally do this have been halted during lockdown. We look forward to working with, and supporting you, now and in the future.
Havens Community Hub Company Secretary and Newhaven Town Councillor
Mary HawesAdvisor – Interest in social isolation and loneliness and access to green spaces
I have a background in local government and the third sector. I am currently co running Cycling Without Age – Seaford Chapter, a group which take elderly and socially isolated individuals for free rides on specially adapted trishaws. This allows them to interact with their environment and socialise again, improving mental and physical health and general wellbeing. During Covid I have been working as part of SeaFriends to set up and run a telephone befriending service to provide regular contact for isolated individuals. Long term it is hoped that we can continue this service and grow it to help to combat social isolation and loneliness in the Seaford area.