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Communities Driving Change

The Communities Driving Change (CDC) programme is one of the main priorities of the 2017-2020 Health and Wellbeing Strategy.

The programme aims to build a 'health creation' platform to improve the health of communities by:

  • identifying issues impacting health and wellbeing that matter to local people 
  • recruiting other residents who have the energy and passion to make a difference 
  • developing and finding new ways to improve health and wellbeing locally.

The programme operates in 12 of the most poorest neighbourhoods in Tower Hamlets. These have been selected based on health data and a need to strengthen assets supporting health and wellbeing in those areas.

Find out more about the local programmes.

The programme is supported and evaluated by experts from the University of East London (UEL)
It is a structured programme formed of the following three phases: 

  1. Scoping (October 2017 to January 2018)
    Each provider managed a period of scoping to identify three areas of focus for each area. Evidence from multiple sources helped teams reach this conclusion. 
  2. Engagement and action planning (February to April 2018)
    Engagement processes identifying the priority issues of focus for sustained ‘enabling’ facilitation by the providers. This phase developed an initial action plan of ‘quick wins’ to build momentum within a neighbourhood of action. It also helped in how they would co-produce a response to "bigger picture" themes identified by citizens. 
  3. Delivery (May 2018 to September 2021)


This is the level of engagement with the community (across 12 neighbourhoods) in the first six months of action plan implementation:

  • 259 volunteers
  • 2,967 residents have attended CDC events
  • 827 resident-led activities have been initiated
  • 56 residents have attended training around building capacity in their communities
  • 176 young people have been involved
  • 49 consultation events  

For more information about delivery visit a provider page.

Local programmes
Locality Provider Neighbourhoods

North East 

Bromley by Bow Centre

Bow East/Old Ford Road 

North West

The Young Foundation

Chicksand Estate

Columbia Road

Collingwood Estate 

South West

MyTime Active


St Dunstan's


South East 

Poplar and Limehouse Network CiC 

Samuda Estate

Teviot Estate

Poplar High Street West (Will Crooks to Pennyfield Estate) 


COVID-19 emergency response, reach and delivery

The ethos of CDC is one of inclusion, ensuring those who are most vulnerable and excluded are not left behind. In the response to COVID-19, a focus on inclusion has ensured that CDC has been able to maintain contact with residents from the start of lockdown.

CDC has a crucial role to play in the recovery phase. Recovery is concerned with

  • inclusion
  • changing people’s lives to end need and
  • investing to solve long-standing problems.

These principles and the methods by which to achieve them are those used by CDC. 

During the emergency, CDC teams have adapted their delivery to include a range of response activities. Please see the provider pages for more information.