Recruitment drive for Community Payback jobs in North West London

MAKING A POSITIVE CHANGE: Community Payback job opportunities

People in North West London are being urged to consider Community Payback job opportunities – both to make positive changes to the lives of people on probation and improve neighbourhoods.

The recruitment drive in North West London comes off the back of the Government’s commitment to increase Community Payback from five million to eight million hours per year. Funded by an extra £93m, there will be 500 new roles created across the country, 69 of which are currently being recruited for in Greater London.

Community Payback (CP), previously known as Community Service, is an alternative to a prison sentence for people who have committed a crime. The Ministry of Justice is looking for supervisors, who work hands-on to oversee Community Payback projects on the ground, and for placement coordinators who establish and maintain relationships with stakeholders to make sure there are a sufficient number of placements.


Working in a Community Payback role gives individuals the opportunity to support people on probation to make improvements to local communities and make positive changes to get their lives back on track. No specific experience or qualifications are required.

Community Payback supervisors lead small teams, helping to motivate them to complete projects that will impact the community – from restoring community facilities like sports halls and playgrounds to planting trees or graffiti removal. Community Payback placement coordinators are responsible both for working with local charities and organisations to agree the projects and for ensuring they are carried out – from planning rotas to making sure everyone has what they need.

One Community Payback project operating in North West London supports Sufra, a charity based on St Raphael’s Estate, Brent’s most disadvantaged neighbourhood. The Community Hub provides a life-line for people in crisis, including families living in extreme poverty and people who are vulnerable, homeless and socially isolated. Community Payback teams have built structures from recycled materials, cut back weeds, supported the growing of fruit, vegetables and herbs, and kept the space clean, tidy and safe.


The new roles are open to a wide range of applicants and are ideal for those looking for a rewarding career where you can both motivate and inspire others to change for the better, and build better and safer places to live.

Nina Parmar, Food Aid and Volunteer Manager, Sufra NW London, said: “It has been a pleasure hosting the Community Payback team over the past year or so. We have a group of Community Payback people on probation working in St Raphael’s Edible Garden every Friday, and they have been a big part of the garden’s development.

“The group (of changing individuals each week) have worked to build structures from recycled materials, cut back weeds, support the growing of dozens of kinds of fruit, vegetables and herbs, and keep the space clean, tidy and safe. Their help has been invaluable, and always overseen by an equally as helpful and charismatic team leader, who has become a real part of the Friday team here at Sufra.”

Neville Padmore, Community Payback Supervisor based in North West London, said: “My introduction to this role was through a personal recommendation on my skills (painting, gardening, woodworking). Each day can be challenging. It involves the supervision of tasks and the individuals to carry out these to the best of their ability as a team.


“To consider a role which supports the delivery of Community Payback, one needs to be patient, have a sense of humour, calm while showing leadership qualities with a hands on approach. Be open-minded due to the nature of the job, what and who it involves.

“The role itself can be satisfying on completion of a task and positive feedback received. Appreciation shown by some individuals once their task (hours) is completed knowingly that you have given them basic skills that can be of use elsewhere.”

Steven Odeyemi, CP operations manager, said: “Sufra NW London is a Food Bank and Kitchen, and the Community Payback project is based in their community garden. The garden provides a therapeutic space for local people and Community Payback has helped to improve the appearance and help harvest the products to support the food bank and kitchen.

“The beneficiary has been incredibly supportive to the supervisor and people on probation and encourages individuals to learn new skills and increase knowledge of growing and cultivating food.”

All new staff are given robust training to help them work effectively and safely with people on probation, from learning about the principles of Community Payback to training on health and safety, risk awareness, and dealing with challenging behaviour. New staff will also have full training on any tools used and will work alongside and shadow an experienced colleague before taking responsibility for supervising a group on their own.

Submitted by Maira Hussain


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