A new pilot project aimed at helping Burnt Oak residents find had a successful launch recently.

The new project called BOOST, (Burnt Oak Opportunity Support Team), held its official launch on Saturday, 25 July, at its base in Burnt Oak library, complete with cake-cutting ceremony and music from two local rappers.

Residents and members of the BOOST team joined in celebrations with Deputy Mayor Councillor Alison Cornelius, the Leader of Barnet Council, Councillor Richard Cornelius, Barnet Homes’ Interim Chief Executive Troy Henshall, Nicky Critchfield, Jobs and Skills Co-ordinator for West London Alliance and Paul Anderson Walsh Chair of the charity LoveBurntOak.

The project is part of the West London Alliance (WLA) ‘Working People, ‘Working Places’ programme where a similar local pilot is run in St Raphael’s estate in Brent.

The aim of the project is to support people to find work, access a wide range of support in their local community as well as increase the prosperity of the area.

Deputy Mayor of Barnet, Councillor Alison Cornelius spent time speaking to BOOST staff about how the project will work. She said: “I would officially like to launch this project which relies on all the partners in this project working together…

“I was very impressed with Barnet Homes’ staff who have already been out knocking on doors and speaking to residents in the area. By putting all the services together under one roof we can offer the local residents the targeted support they need to help them develop new skills and overcome any obstacles that stand in their way.”

Nicky Critchfield of the WLA said: “I am really delighted with the project and how much support we’ve had for the launch. I can’t wait to come back in a year’s time to find out about the difference that BOOST has made to people in the community.”

The multi-agency team is based on the ground floor of Burnt Oak Library with staff from Jobcentre Plus, Barnet Homes, Barnet Council’s Benefits Service and Education and Skills team. Their key community partner, Love Burnt Oak, will also support the team’s work.

You can follow the progress of the BOOST project through their twitter @BOOSTBurntOak and their Facebook page: BOOST Burnt Oak.