Hélène-Marie named Prime Minister’s ‘Point of Light’ in London’s deprived East End

Helene-Marie Irving.Troy Bailey

Helene-Marie Irving.Troy Bailey - Credit: Points of Light

Property guardian Hélène-Marie Irving has been named as one of the country’s outstanding volunteers by the Prime Minister in the government’s Points of Light awards.

She was nominated by the Dot Dot Dot social enterprise in London’s East End which lets volunteers live cheaply in buildings that would otherwise be empty.

Helene-Marie, who joined the social enterprise last year, takes care of a building in Poplar for the landlord while it awaits regeneration.

“Being part of the enterprise opened opportunities I wouldn’t have thought about before,” she said. “It’s changed the way I think about where I live and the way that I see my role in the neighbourhood.”

Hélène-Marie won the award as a volunteer at 19 Princelet Street, Europe’s first museum of immigration in Spitalfields, as well as for a social inclusion mentoring and launching a micro-funding project.

She runs her mentoring scheme at Stepney’s Arbour centre, helping migrant woman learn English and practical life skills, and was the ‘light’ behind a micro-funding enterprise where people come together to share a meal and raise funds for small, community-led projects.

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