After being whisked into KPC 3 years ago by Carnival Arts Scotland, with the help of an extraordinary woman called Julie, Martin became the new Development Director for KPC. Working on strategic direction, securing resources, setting and communicating vision and making everyone feel welcome, Martin often spends his days running from one end of KPC to another to ensure everything is running smoothly and programs and events are set to go ahead. His favourite part of his job is assisting to bring people together from varying backgrounds to share the same space and values, bringing a heart to the community. After working in a non-formal educational setting, setting up a charity that gave international opportunities for young people, Martin was attracted to KPC because it’s, in his words, “the coolest place in Glasgow”!
Having previously spent 2 years working behind the scenes with KPC as a board member, Martin is now an active participant in the day to day goings on at the complex and can usually be found looming the hallways having a friendly chat people from the community or speaking business jargon into his mobile phone. As a strong believer that communities improve when they’re given opportunities, access to resources and individuals that are willing and able to take initiative and responsibility, Martin has dedicated his career to improving KPC and helping create a safe space for everyone to come together and have fun. Since he’s been here, Martin has seen many changes, helping people when they needed it and seeing events come to flourish that KPC has organised, all these moments have equated to a very powerful connection to KPC and what it does for the community.
If he were any animal, Martin would be a zebra, just so he could be pals with Racheal. When he’s not at KPC, he’s off in his camper van, having adventures!
After dancing her way through the doors of KPC with G.O.D.S, Racheal soon stumbled over an advertisement for Building and Programme manager position listed within the complex. Having previously been a bar manager at The Art School Student Association, Racheal left a team of life-long friends to pursue a career with KPC. After three years, come July, spent dealing with day to day management, enquiries, bookings, and programming, Racheal has become an integral part of Kinning Park Complex and what we strive to do for the local community.
Her role involves a lot of demanding work, but she’s able to get through by keeping in mind the people KPC benefits, ensuring KPC becomes progressively inclusive and accessible to those who need it. She’s been proud to watch how the community meal has progressed over the years, forming now to a busy hub of interaction amongst the local community. Since working here, Rachel as been able to meet a wonderful team of folk and people from other organisations. When she’s not helping keep KPC together, Racheal spends her time dedicated to finding new ways to raise funds to help purchase the building and keep programs up and running, that is, when she’s not visiting loved ones or eating cake.
Her favourite quote is: “It is better to die for an idea that will live, than to live for an idea that will die.” Steven Biko. If Racheal were any animal, she’d be a fun-loving zebra or a lovable cat.
When she first heard of KPC, Clare thought it was mainly studio spaces her friends used. Once she started to scratch the surface, she soon attended a Burns Night event and discovered its amazing history. With its abundance of different activities, classes, community projects and organisations that use the space, there’s always different things happening every week and there is something for everyone! Guided here by Project Scotland, Clare soon fell in love and began to give her all to the volunteer position in hopes of working for KPC one day – thankfully that day came quickly and she’s now the well-known Events and Communications Officer, facilitating events and promotions, fixing technical issues, supporting new volunteers with the media team and helping senior staff with sudden tasks that occasionally like to pop up and surprise people!
Starting out studying Time Based Art and Digital Film, Clare went from working in film, TV, music videos and commercials and doing camera assistant work to helping maintain the public perception of KPC and helping the events go off without a hitch. If she were an animal, she’d be a dolphin, a fun-loving swimmer with a free spirit and differing perception of humans with their unique intelligence. The most impacting part of KPC was the Code Your Future workshop where dedicated mentors who are qualified web developers volunteer their free time to help refugees and asylum seekers become developers. Working together to create an app for KPC and during graduation it was clear to see just how important workshops like this was to people and their futures.
When she’s not running around ensuring things are going smoothly, Clare is running with Operations Manager Racheal to train for a 10K marathon and taking boxing classes. If she were a song, she’d be the classic Go Your Own Way by Fleetwood Mac, because what other way would you go? Her favourite quote is by Shirley Manson; “I say embrace the total geek in yourself and just enjoy it. Life is too short to be cool.” Wise words from a wise lady.
One fateful day in 2013, the walls of Kinning Park Complex were embraced with sounds from the Ladyfest feminist music festival, luring in passionate and dedicated folk from all over Glasgow. One such individual to be lured was our friendly volunteer, finance and events coordinator, Lauren! Since her initial visit, Lauren returned to start volunteering in 2014 as a Communications Assistant and has since found her home within the rustic walls of the homely community centre.
She can often be found supporting the volunteers, organising events and finances and chattering away either via email or just around the halls. Working within the KPC team has inspired her in both her personal and professional life, touched by the strong, creative, funny, resilient, warm and generous natures of both staff and community.
A Media Communications graduate, Lauren was found on the doorstep of Project Scotland, having dabbled in Public Relations and feeling lost, the shining beacon of community within KPC helped guide her to her true calling; to help people. Now working with KPC, Glasgow Repair Café and cofounding Scottish Irish Abortion Rights Campaign, Lauren now has a home with her chosen family of the community. If she were stranded on a desert island and was unable to teleport KPC itself, she’d bring sunscreen, water and a Greg’s sandwich. What else could you possibly need?
Since 2016, Alan has been the well known and loved head chef of KPC, supplying hot meals for the KPCafé three times a week for two and a half years. Since being told of the job by the Govan Community Project, Alan has since had a home here at KPC; helping fill our bellies and organise volunteers within the kitchen and caring for the community, one meal at a time. He has since been ensnared by the loving and inclusive nature of KPC – fully embracing its mission to care for and feed the community. When Alan can’t be found cooking up a storm in the KPC kitchens, he can be found cooking in his leisurely time, when he’s not off out and about visiting his family. If he were any song, he’d be Dark Side of the Moon by Pink Floyd, an absolute classic!
If Alan were stranded on a desert island, he’d bring matches, cigarettes and food. In it for the long haul! His favorite quote is "smashing!", presumably a Still Game fan!
Starting in September 2017, Kevin was drawn in by the positive force of KPC but knew little of what goes on within its walls. One fateful day, he came across an internet advertisement for a Support Worker here and has since felt settled with this loving family like community. To Kevin, KPC makes a difference in peoples’ lives and helps people feel included, overall bringing a sense of positivity to the local area by contributing towards people, so that they in turn contribute towards the complex. The internet was what brought Kevin here, but getting to know the people and all their diverse backgrounds was what made him stay.
If he were an animal, Kevin said he’d be an eagle, to experience the joys and freedom of being a bird, but without having to worry about being attacked. On a desert island, he would bring a phone with internet access, so he could still speak to his family, and then the obligatory food and water. If he were a song, he’d be Imagine by John Lennon. His favorite quote that encapsulates who Kevin is? “Love the life you live. Live the life you love.” By Bob Marley. Good choice!
Artists of all kinds love to flock to KPC and it’s beautiful, yet affordable studio spaces, and Janine and her friends were no exception. After using KPC as their social hub, Janine was soon lured in to the sense of community and equality amongst us and soon became a dedicated participant within the community centre as a resident caretaker, maintaining the grounds and keeping things tidy so people can continue to come and enjoy the building. Working here for over 5 years, Janine has seen many people walk through KPC’s doors, watching it build and grow into a safe and welcoming space for many people who are in need of extra support. With a background in theatre training, when she’s not here helping keep things afloat and ensuring everyone is included, Janine works as a freelance community arts facilitator, whilst still finding the occasional time to dance like nobody’s watching and enjoy a nice cup of tea, a biscuit and an enjoyable book.
A self-proclaimed muppet and with the soul of a funkylishious song, Janine can be found marching to the beat of her own drum and embracing diverse cultures and backgrounds, encapsulating the inclusivity of KPC and its morals. All she needs to survive a desert island is a solar powered music device, a hammock and a good book, sounds like a delightful holiday! Janine is often found participating in events thrown at the KPC from dance, yoga and ceilidhs to film screenings and meals.
A friend in need is a friend indeed, a friend who brings you to KPC is better! Having been introduced to Kinning Park Complex by a friend back in 2017, Jess has been working within the halls to help prepare the rooms for all the amazing activities going on. A passionate artist, Jess loves talking to the local community and its residents out in our scenic garden over delicious meals and excellent company. The community spirit is what helps fuel the power behind KPC for Jess, and when she’s not here helping us keep things in order and ready for the next workshop or art exhibition, she’s off creating stunning art herself and browsing the vast museums of Glasgow.
Where would we be without our dedicated janitor? Under a pile of rubbish, that’s for sure! With Jess’s help, KPC stays clean and safe for all the people that walk through its doors. If she were an animal, she’d be a crow, intelligent and beautiful with the ability to pick the treasures from the trash and see the beauty in life even when it’s a bit obscured. If she were trapped on a desert island, she’d be equal measures practical and lovable, bringing a wooden raft, an army knife and a cuddly teddy for company! Her favorite quote? “The unfed mind devours itself.” By Gore Vidal.
Since starting a volunteer position here at KPC, Lee has put his all into everything he does for the community, resulting in KPC employing him since September 2017. An enthusiastic young groundskeeper, Lee helps maintain KPC and ensures that everything remains clean and safe for public use. From tending to the extensive garden with all of it’s beautiful and delicious plants, to assisting in the kitchen to ensure the community meal is both on time and tasty, Lee is vital to the running of daily events here at KPC.
The most important part about KPC for Lee is how it manages to bring people from all circumstances together, ensuring people get what they need, no matter what their background is. Lee feels particularly at home within the kitchen, interacting with as many people as he can and basking in their friendly glow. The best way to improve the community here in Kinning Park for Lee would be helping KPC stay open and active, as KPC already do so much for the community and it’s important to the people that use it. If it were to close, many people from around the area would be incredibly sad to see it go.
Previously unaware of KPC before he started working here, Lee is grateful for his new understanding of community and the people he’s been able to meet along his journey throughout KPC. When he’s not helping keep the place spick and span, Lee is off visiting friends, family and his girlfriend. His favorite quote is “Good, better, best, never let it rest. ‘Till your good is better and your better is best.” by St. Jerome.