About Camerados

Camerados is a movement and so includes many people and organisations. The group of people who spend every day promoting this movement and hosting this website are called the Association of Camerados (AOC).

AOC have partners with whom we work closely on the ground every day – Owls, On Our Radar and Ratio.

Our “Living room” project is only possible because of the support, friendship and inspiration of Kindness.org. The AOC could not carry out any of our work without the LankellyChase foundation who backed us from the beginning.

Association of Camerados
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Our Partners
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Our story

We’ve all had tough times, who hasn’t? Some of us at the Association of Camerados (AOC) spent many years in the “social sector” working in homelessness, mental health, addiction, community development and similar fields. We’ve seen people in extreme situations in their lives. Some of us have been in extreme situations ourselves. We saw that what worked for people, what gave them a fulfilling life and kept them from coming back to services, was having two things: Friends and Purpose. We felt that all too often if they did get these two things it was in spite of the existing system.

Also, the system rarely puts people in charge of their own solutions; it doesn’t trust them to help each other; it doesn’t value friendship as a real solution and so people remain disconnected and adrift. We saw that mutual aid – people helping people outside of the system – challenged that. It also led to people getting Friends and Purpose. Mutual Aid helps people to self-organise who aren’t necessarily friends but support each other through tough times – this has been around a long time however where previously it has been the preserve of great movements related to one issue such as Alcoholics Anonymous, now at the Association of Camerados we want it for everyone. Everywhere!

Testimonials

“Last week, I walked into the cafe to be greeted by the sight of every table filled with talking and smiling people on one table a group of Muslim mothers and their babies sharing cake, some elderly people on another table catching up over soup, beside them was a table of support workers from local Mental Health services sharing lunch with their teammates outside some adults who had been long term unemployed playing scrabble, all together, all eating, all sharing space. Just magic. We’re deeply proud to stand with Camerados in their kindness powered mission to create a more compassionate world.”

Emmy Shaugnessy, CEO Ark T Centre

“Baltimore is divided on a neighborhood level, sometimes just a few streets. We need public Living Rooms in other parts of the city too”

Dr. Philip Leaf – Director, Johns Hopkins University Center for Adolescent Health and Prevention of Youth Violence

“We all walked away a new level of energy and connection to our Camden community”

Virginia Hirst – Transformations Team Manager, Camden Council

“What you’re doing with Camerados is astonishing and we’re really grateful that you came to help us help Camden.”

Becca Dove – Head of Family Support & Complex Families, Camden Council

“We absolutely believe that a partnership with Camerados within our CRC operations would be valuable. We know a lot of the issues we come across in the criminal justice system relate very much to social exclusion and isolation, and your approach seems a very creative way to address this.”

Tim Hawywood – Group Finance Director and Head of Sustainability, Interserve PLC

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