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Our community partnerships

We offer opportunities for sharing cultural heritage, and feelings and memories of home.

We use collections to explore themes around domestic daily life and relationships. And we explore home-based activities like cooking, gardening, decorating and play.

Two adults and a child doing craft activities at a table Hayley Madden

Who we work with

We work in partnership with local community organisations in Hackney and surrounding boroughs.

We are particularly keen to work with people from Vietnam and with Greek and Turkish Cypriot, South East Asian and Black and African Caribbean communities.

We are very interested in intergenerational groups and any groups focusing on mental health and wellbeing.

Our focus is on engaging with people who are typically under-represented in the museum-going public or in our Museum's collections and displays.

Recent partners and projects

What's Your Cup Of Tea?

Making a tea blend for Hackney

We are working with the local community to develop a custom tea blend that reflects and celebrates Hackney and its residents. 

Learn more

Tea Jars

Hackney Cypriot Association

Creating a mini living wall

Exploring the significance of gardens and outdoor space in Cypriot homes.

A chance for older Greek and Turkish Cypriots to share their memories of and feelings about home in Cyprus. Creating indoor planters for their homes and community centre in Hackney.

For more about Hackney Cypriot Association

Two older people sat at a table holding up small plants

East and South East Asian Communities

We work with people from the East and South East Asian communities (ESEA) in Hackney and beyond as they explore their diaspora and migrant experiences.

With partners including New Earth Theatre, Vietnamese Family Partnership and Lewisham Council, we have produced Home Grown, a film about the gardens tended by London's Vietnamese community, and Sonic Pho, a project keeping South East Asian food traditions alive in the diaspora. 

Discover our ESEA programme

Lady Gardening

Centre 151

Nhà or Home 

Documenting memories of home in Vietnam with people who travelled to the UK as refugees.

Vietnamese elders share their stories and treasured possessions including photographs, books, objects and collections. A chance to reminisce and collect histories around food, dance and share between generations

Centre 151 is an artistic and creative hub created by Vietnamese, Lao and Cambodian communities to welcome in the wider public.

Two people holding up archival images and documents

Lien Viet: Islington and Shoreditch Housing Association

Tết or Lunar New Year

Creating decorations for Vietnamese New Year inspired by traditional crafts.

An opportunity for people from Vietnam to gain computer skills and reminisce about traditional celebrations. Making decorations and sharing with food at their annual event.

Islington and Shoreditch Housing Association offers outreach and support to a community of people living in their properties.

A person cutting out shapes from coloured paper at a desk

Feel Good Festival

We run a community festival each year.

This year five local organisations curated the one-day event. 1,000 people took part in activities aimed at boosting wellbeing:

  • Making Turkish, Cypriot and Vietnamese crafts
  • Relaxing with Tai Chi and foot massage
  • Energising with dance classes
  • Connecting with diverse communities
  • Sharing conversation over bánh mì and Turkish food for lunch

Faith and Culture forum

The Faith and Culture forum is made up of people from the local community, specialists and Museum staff.

It aims to increase the visibility of diverse cultural heritage and faiths in the Museum's collections, programmes and audiences.

The current project is Shelf Life, a film for the new galleries. The forum produced the film (collaborating with filmmaker, Mina Salimi) and co-curated the gallery where we will display the film. The film is a portrait of six people and the most meaningful objects they have in their homes.

How we work

We are committed to being part of a reciprocal relationship.

  • Respond to the needs of our local audiences
  • Involve people in projects and events through collaboration, co-curation and participation
  • Establish the Museum as a safe a trusted social space
  • Partner and collaborate in projects and events
  • Establish long-term partnerships
  • Diversify the Museum's collections and displays by working with people to collect and share their stories
  • Embed in our local community, share skills and resources with individuals and organisations
  • Be a catalyst for change in both the Museum and the community
  • Unlock the Museum's potential as a community resource and cultural hub

Get involved

Please get in touch with Rebecca Jacobs if you would like to:

  • Work in partnership with the Museum
  • Join a panel
  • Take part in a community festival
  • Hold a community event or meeting at the Museum
  • Invite the Museum to pop up your community event
  • Research the local community in our collections