Welcome to our new blog!
Every Wednesday in September we invite you behind the scenes of our work on Humans of Hilgrove, our residents-led arts exhibition on the Hilgrove Estate in Camden.
Hilgrove Resident and Community Organiser, Kaamila, will share her experience of living on the estate and being a part of the community action taking place.
See life on Hilgrove through her eyes as she tells us in her own words about growing up on the estate and working with North Camden Zone.
My name is Kaamila, I'm 20 years old.
Born and raised in London and I have lived in the Hilgrove Estate for 15 years.
I'm currently working towards my degree in History and Politics. I chose this field of study because I've always been interested in how society, technology, and government worked, way back when.
The Estate is a fantastic place to grow up and live in. Having lived most of my life on this estate, Hilgrove represents stability and comfort. Its proximity to the green areas of Primrose Hill, Hampstead Heath, Regent's Park and its excellent transport links, have come to benefit me immensely. One of its greatest assets, however, is the incredible cosmopolitan and vibrant atmosphere. You can hear English, Somali, Kosovan, Arabic, Mandarin and Bengali. Yes, it's all here.
When you live with people who are different from you in terms of their culture/way of life you learn and evolve as a human, becoming more accessible/tolerant to new concepts and insights and, by doing so, you not only develop your understanding but also develop your way of living.
Lucky our estate has a wonderful playground, where the younger me spent a lot of time, and to this day I will enjoy the odd spin on the swing set. The playground is essentially the heart of the estate where people come together, and children play. But the playground is not just for kids and is used by all; the basketball court has held some intense football, basketball and tennis games.
The winter months on the estate are very quiet, but there is a constant stream of school kids passing through the estate during the academic year. Nevertheless, during the summer months people use the green spaces gardening, sunbathing, washing their vehicles and playing on the playground, although this is generally the case in the UK.
Overall, the people of the estate are nice people, but they are very reserved. If people socialise, they prefer to remain in groups where they have similarities, e.g. parents in the park.
The older I get, the more time I spend out of the estate, going to work, school, and enjoying time with my friends. When I'm home, I just want to lounge around and I think this is typical to those who live in the estate. Becoming a community organiser has helped me reconnect with the estate. More on that next week!