Do you need professional advice?

Do you need quality, professional advice? Although the drop-in advice sessions at STAG have now stopped, Blackfriars Advice Centre is still providing a service for Travellers in the area and STAG are More »

Driving Theory Test

Passing your driving theory can be tough. If you are a Southwark resident, there is free driving theory test practice available. All you need is to have a library number. Follow the More »

Gypsy Roma Traveller History Month

Should all schools celebrate GRTHM in June? Yes, all schools should. No, but schools which have Traveller, Gypsy and Roma students should. No, no schools should. If you would like to find More »

Applying for Schools in Southwark

For the most accurate up-to-date information on applying to school in Southwark it is best to use Southwark Council’s website or call 0207 525 5337. All school applications have to be done More »

CSCS Cards

What is a CSCS Card? The CSCS Card is used by the construction industry to make sure that all workers have enough Health and Safety knowledge to work on a construction site. More »

Make Money From Your Creative Skills!

Do you make greetings cards, jewellery, prints, badges, headband, soft furnishings or anything else? Would you like to sell it in a shop? Spark is a ‘pop-up’ shop about to open in More »

Monthly Archives: April 2013

Missing Traveller Girl

Hi All ,

Please support the Beany family by sending the poster to all your contacts as far and as wide as possible. Elaine went missing last tuesday after reciving the news she had Throat Cancer, she didnt take her phone or cashcards with her, Travellers in England and Ireland are looking for Elaine as her family are worried as this is out of character for her to dissapear and not be in touch with her family and/or friends. Our thoughts and prays going out to the Beany family and to Elaine that she returns home safely.


Consultation on Changes to Health Services in Dulwich and Surrounding Areas

The government is changing the way that Health Care services are commissioned. In the past, PCTs (Primary Care Trusts) decided what types of services would be bought and how people could access health care. Now groups of GPs- CCGs (Clinical Commissioning Groups)- will be in charge of deciding how the NHS’s money is spent.

The CCG for Dulwich- which covers surrounding areas such as Peckham- is conducting a consultancy to find out what local people think of their ideas to change the system.

The ideas put forward by the CCG include:

Getting health-care advice and diagnosis from pharmacies as well as at GPs or Health Centres. Pharmacies detecting health problems early.

The idea behind this is to reduce waiting times at GPs and let you get advice closer to home at your pharmacy.

 Providing health services closer to home for expectant mothers and young children. More services at home and in local community buildings.

The idea is to make it easier for expectant mothers and families with young children to get health care so they don’t have to wait for hours at GPs.

For older people and people with ongoing health problems- having health workers and social workers jointly monitor health so that problems can be detected early.

The idea is that elderly people will be constantly monitored for poor health so that they do not miss something and have to go to hospital for emergency treatment.

The CCG also want to know if people would prefer having more services available at GPs- where many health problems can be treated,- OR if you would prefer a reduction in the services at GPs so that waiting time is reduced as treatment is done in many different health centres.


If you’re still reading, you may be interested in sharing your opinions about the plans. The CCG wants to hear from all community members, particularly groups which have been marginalised in the past. If you have any ideas of how to improve health services to suit you- OR ideas which you think would improve health care for the whole Traveller community- please let STAG know and we will pass on your views. If you prefer, you can call the CCG’s Sarah Mulcahy on 0808 178 9055.



Sunbeds- do you know the risks?

Tanning shops seem to be popping up all around us- and given the weather we’ve had it’s easy to understand why. When you start seeing men queuing up in beauty salons on the Old Kent Road you know that something’s popular.

At STAG we know why sunbeds are popular, and we don’t want to preach, but we just wanted to tell you of the risks so that you can make an informed decision. Using sunbeds does increase the risk of skin cancer and ages the skin.

We know that everybody is not going to stop using sunbeds, but please remember the risks and be careful. The more sessions you have, and the longer they are, the more chance there is of serious damage. If you are young, have fair skin, freckles and/or red or blonde hair, the risk is greater. Please think about the long-term effect sunbeds will have not only on your health, but on your skin’s youthful look. Fake tan is always there as a healthy alternative.

The Health and Safety Executive recommends that you should not use UV tanning equipment (sunbeds) if:

  • you have fair, sensitive skin that burns easily, or tans slowly or poorly
  • you have a history of sunburn, particularly in childhood
  • you have lots of freckles and/or red hair
  • you have lots of moles
  • you or someone in your family has had skin cancer
  • sunlight has already badly damaged your skin

Even tanning shops recommend using sunbeds in moderation- make sure you don’t do yourself any long-term damage.


Traveller Parent & Toddler Group- Leyton Square- Every Tuesday from 1:30pm

STAG is pleased to announce that the Traveller Parent & Toddler group starting Tuesday 16th April, 1:30pm at the One O’Clock Club- Leyton Square (adventure playground on Peckham Park road SE15). We hope to see many parents and toddlers there hope that the sun will be shining.

Come to discuss parenting with other parents and have a chance to let some of the stress out over a cup of tea. It will give your toddler a first taste of school in a very comfortable- Traveller-friendly setting.

At the sessions there is a chance to find out about all the services available aimed at parents of young children. It will also give your children a head start over toddlers who don’t go to nursery before school. The nursery is run by Nell Gywnn Children’s Centre which has worked with Travellers in the area for years.

We hope to see you there!

Don’t Believe Everything You Hear About Travellers

We wanted to find out if some of the things people say about Travellers is true. We asked some young Travellers to interview each other and write about being a Traveller and their hopes for the future. Here is what some of them said in their own words.

I am an Irish traveller from London. I attended school right up until GCSEs and completed and passed all 10 of my GCSE’s gaining grades from A-C- which was quite unusual for Travelling girls but my father insisted we went because we are permanently settled. I was glad I did because it proved to everyone that not all Travellers are illiterate and not intelligent. I then went onto gain level 2 and 3 beauty qualifications and am currently studying level 2 hairdressing and when I qualify I am hoping to start working, combining all my qualifications together. That would mean a lot to me as I am quite an independent person and would like to be successful and earn my own way. I am also learning how to drive and would like to pass my test in the near future as it will make getting a job a lot easier for me and benefit my independence. People are quite stereo-typical of young Travelling girls and I just thought I would share my story with you.
K McDonagh

FACT: In July 2010, 60% of Travellers taking GCSEs in Southwark got 5 A*-Cs- that’s above the national average for all pupils (53%).

I am a 19 yr old Irish Traveller women. I study Beauty Therapy at Lewisham college. I really enjoy studying about beauty as this is a big thing in The Traveller Community, all Traveller women take care in their appearance.
I want to encourage other Traveller girls to study. I want to show other Traveller young women that it is OK to go to college and achieve your goals and therefore work in the future which is my aim.

Travellers in employment.
Travellers find it hard to get employment and some of us feel we have to hide that we are Travellers. Once the employer finds out that we are Travellers then either attitudes change towards us or we are kind of forced to leave the job. In the past few years more and more Traveller young women are getting jobs which is very good for them as it makes them become independent and also socialising with the wider community which helps us to give people the knowledge about what Travellers are and what the culture and beliefs are.

I want non-Travellers to know that we do study and work.
I find it upsetting when I hear non-Travellers talking about my community group in a negative way “they don’t work” – “they are scoungers” – which of course is not true. A lot of Travellers these days are on training courses, working and achieving their goals which is a very good achievement for my community.
M McDonagh aged 19

FACT: More and more Traveller women are going into further education and finding jobs these days. Women are not forced to cook and clean all day.

No Advice Session 10th April

There will be no advice session next week- 10th April- as Blackfriars are unable to send a replacement advisor for this week.

If you need to see an advisor urgently this week, please come in or call STAG and we will arrange for you to receive advice at another time.

The advice session normally runs from 10-12 every Wednesday morning at STAG’s office- please arrive before 11am to be sure to be seen.