Andrew Watts, Chief Executive at Groundwork South and North Tyneside who have signed the South Tyneside Pledge.

Groundwork – Growing their Own!

Groundwork is a federation of charities mobilising practical community action on poverty and the environment across the UK.  

In 2021 Groundwork celebrated 30 years of delivering its mission in South Tyneside, with its services never more needed. The impact of the pandemic and cost of living crisis has been significant, this alongside the climate emergency has highlighted the stark inequalities across communities. Groundwork continues to tackle these inequalities working with partners to build green jobs and deliver across four main areas: 

  • Empowering Sustainable Communities
  • Raising Aspirations
  • Creating Better Places
  • Enriching Lives Through Culture and Heritage

Groundwork South Tyneside has signed the South Tyneside Pledge, as an extension to the brilliant work already going on across the borough.

From providing households with energy saving measures, to supporting community groups and people to work, the organisation offers a range of support services, programmes and events. It also operates Jarrow Hall, Marsden Road Community Centre and manages West Boldon Lodge – part of the National Grid Environmental Education Centre Network.

Groundwork has an established volunteer programme offering social action to corporate partners. We have a partnership with Safe Foundation and in just one day in July 2022 Groundwork hosted 350 Sage Foundation staff at Jarrow Hall, their staff undertook over 2000 hours of action during corporate volunteering day. The impact to our site is amazing and the teamwork and social impact by Sage Foundation staff is incredible which is helping us to delivery our vision of Changing Places, Changing Lives.

In addition to supporting the local community, Groundwork also invests in its staff through the Better Health at Work initiative and has a strong focus on apprenticeships and developing staff from within.

Andrew Watts, Chief Executive, Groundwork South, and North Tyneside explains:

“We’ve been in South Tyneside for 31 years, we are part of the community so signing the pledge was an easy one for us as an organisation. We set out with a principle of growing our own and investing in the people of South Tyneside and with that we’ve gone from zero apprentices to six in a year, so we are really committed with every vacancy that comes up we explore to see if we can ‘grow our own’, we are really committed to supporting our young people.”

Andrew Watts, Chief Executive at Groundwork South and North Tyneside who have signed the South Tyneside Pledge.
Andrew Watts, Chief Executive at Groundwork South and North Tyneside who have signed the South Tyneside Pledge.

Cllr Margaret Meling, lead member for Economic Growth, Skills and Climate change at South Tyneside Council, said:

“Groundwork has been demonstrating its commitment to the borough for more than three decades and has become an integral part of our community.

“Their ‘grow their own’ ethos of fostering local talent, supporting young people and raising aspirations is what the Pledge is all about.”

Launched in January 2022, the South Tyneside Pledge aims to boost local economic activity, reduce health inequalities, cut carbon emissions and enhance civic pride for the benefit of the whole borough.

Organisations, public and private, big businesses and small firms, can sign up at any time and become part of the Pledge South Tyneside network at

Pledge Profiles

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