Health effects of air pollution

Invitation to Tender: Building a grassroots movement tackling air pollution inequity –  Learning Partner

Contact Farid to submit your tender by 8pm, 17th January 2023

We are looking for a learning partner with a passion for grassroots movement building, and experience in facilitation, to support learning on how to amplify the voices of those most affected by air pollution in South London (often Black and minoritised communities, people on lower incomes, and those already experiencing health impacts). 

If you have experience of movement building, building relationships, managing a diverse set of stakeholders and holding spaces to learn and create shared objectives, please read on and apply. We would love to hear from you. 

Submission deadline: 8pm, Wednesday 17th January 2024

Farid Kelekun

Submit your tender

Submit your tender by 8pm, 17th January 2023.

Submit your tender to Farid Kelekun Download the full Invitation to Tender as PDF

Who we are

Impact on Urban Health is part of Guy’s & St Thomas’ Foundation, a charitable foundation based in South London. We address health inequalities by focusing on a few health issues that disproportionately impact people living in cities – children’s health and food, multiple long-term conditions, the health effects of air pollution, and children’s mental health. Most of our work is specifically focused on the boroughs of Lambeth and Southwark, but we share what we learn both nationally and internationally to influence urban health nationally and internationally. 

Health effects of air pollution programme

Health effects of air pollution is a 10-year programme looking to address the health inequities that stem from air pollution. Most of our work focuses on systemic change, working with businesses, government and communities to make changes that leave a legacy on people’s health. We try to focus on areas where we can contribute something unique or significant to the inequitable impact of poor air quality. We currently focus on reducing pollution generated by businesses (particularly construction and freight industries), improving indoor air quality in people’s homes, investing in new ventures that tackle air pollution, and working with local communities to amplify the voices of those most affected by air pollution. We call this last area of work the ‘Amplifying Voices’ portfolio.  

Amplifying voices

Air pollution is an environmental justice issue, a racial justice issue and a health equity issue. The amplifying voices strand of work engages and amplifies the voices of people most impacted by air pollution in South London.  Specifically, this means Black and minoritised residents, as well as children, older people, people with heart and lung conditions and people living on lower incomes. We strive to do this in ways that are community-led, participatory, co-created and de-centralised. We want to learn how we, as a funder, with our partners, can build local power through movement building, organising and campaigning.  

Over the last two years, we have funded a combination of 1) existing organisations that amplify community voices in South London such as Global Black Maternal Health, Mums for Lungs and Ella Roberta Foundation and 2) projects that involved learning and engaging with communities on their understanding and perception of air pollution (some examples of work are here and here). As per our emerging strategy, and the ask from communities, we are now embarking on a new phase for amplifying voices that focuses on building a more concerted movement promoting advocacy, awareness and building agency/power.

Building a grassroots movement tackling air pollution inequity – the next 12 months

We have recently funded a set of partner organisations to deliver standalone projects relating to the aims of building communities’ advocacy, awareness and agency/power. These organisations are: 

  • Centric Community Research – engaging community champions and creatives in South London on the topic of air pollution with a view to equip them with knowledge and skills and spread awareness in their communities. (agency/power and awareness) 
  • Centric Lab – bringing together a team to work with people experiencing the worst injustices of air pollution to gather community symptom data, to build an evidence base that will hold polluters accountable for poor health outcomes and co-creating a new air pollution justice toolkit for communities. Their goal is to support the campaigning and justice journey of communities currently advocating for clean air. (agency/power and advocacy) 
  • TSIP – supporting overlooked and emerging air pollution campaigners in South London to come together and find opportunities for grant funding. (advocacy and agency/power) 
  • Rooted By Design – building on previous work to embark on designing and testing a programme with Black community leaders on the topic of environmentalism, with the idea to “reimagine” what a future could look like around a healthy environment. (agency/power and awareness) 
  • Love Ssega and Purposeworking towards spinning out an independent, community-led Live and Breathe campaign, whilst continuing the campaign itself to coincide with election milestones in 2024. (advocacy and awareness)

We are also working with these partners collectively, slowly building an ecosystem of organisations with diverse, complementary approaches, who collaborate with us and each other on shared goals.  We will co-create with these partners a way of engaging and sharing with each other, with a view to making space for potential collaboration. As we embark on a new phase of more proactive “action” based work, we want to ensure we are learning effectively, to inform us and partners on what we can do long-term.  

Our key learning questions

Over the next 12 months, we would like the learning partner to support these five partner organisations and Impact on Urban Health to collectively learn more about the following areas: 

About building grassroots movements 

  1. In what ways are the individual projects building communities’ agency and power, increasing awareness in South London, and learning what the best routes are for advocacy around air pollution? 
  2. How far are these approaches achieving tangible changes at this stage?  
  3. What are we learning about how to seed grassroots movements and support these to become genuinely community-led?  

About building an ecosystem of partner organisations 

  1. How far does this group of partners have a shared understanding (with each other, and us) on a vision for building grassroots movements to advocate on air pollution?  
  2. What shared resources might be needed to support these partners and communities to succeed in their ambitions (for example, skills, connections, information, understanding of audiences, etc)?  
  3. How can this group of partners, and us, best support each other on shared objectives, work better together to achieve common aims, and collectively contribute towards building grassroots movements?  

About our approach as a funder 

  1. How can Impact on Urban Health best support this group of partners and the communities they are working with, whilst acknowledging and addressing the power dynamics that are at play in our relationships?  
  2. What can we learn about the process of building grassroots movements tackling air pollution inequities, and the potential contribution this approach could make towards wider systems change?  
  3. What can we learn from this period of work that should inform our future plans for the Amplifying Voices portfolio and future funding commitments?  

The role of the learning partner

We would like the learning partner to support this group of partners and Impact on Urban Health to learn, improve, and work collaboratively where there is an appetite to do so. We anticipate that this will involve:  

  • Bringing your expertise on grassroots movement building, so that you can support, challenge, inform, and act as an expert sounding board throughout the partnership. 
  • Building relationships with each of the individual organisations involved to understand their work and support their learning, to the extent that each partner wants and needs this support. 
  • Supporting the cohort of organisations to understand collectively how to work together, create collective goals, spot for opportunities to collaborate and share learning across the group. 
  • Supporting partners to understand how to make best use of their relationship with Impact on Urban Health (e.g. through accessing or asking for resources, networks, skills, etc) to further individual and collective air pollution advocacy aims. 
  • Designing and facilitating learning and collaboration sessions over the course of the year, reflecting the priorities and preferences of the organisations in the cohort. 

Whilst the learning partner contract will be with Impact on Urban Health for administrative reasons, we would like the learning partner to prioritise partners’ learning needs and interests first – supporting them with learning rather than ‘monitoring’ their work. As far as possible, we would like the learning partner to share emergent learning with us based on partners’ insights and experiences, so that we can build our own understanding of this work and the contribution we can make.  

We anticipate that the learning partner will have a role in supporting both individual organisations/projects, and supporting the group as a cohort. Finding the right balance between these should be determined by each partners’ needs and preferences. Some partners already have budget and/or in-house expertise to support with learning and evaluation, and we would like the learning partner to supplement any existing work rather than duplicating.  

What the first few months could look like

We expect that the learning partner will support the following initial activities but are also open to other suggestions:  

  • Conversations with individual partners and Impact on Urban Health to understand hopes/needs/concerns on a project and cohort level. 
  • Introduction and facilitation with the cohort of partners to pull together some shared learning objectives for the cohort. 
  • Introduce concepts of movement building to partners and Impact on Urban Health staff to build collective understanding. 
  • Plan further facilitation sessions over the course of the year in collaboration with Impact on Urban Health and with feedback from partners. 

What are we looking for?

We are seeking a learning partner with the following set of experience

  1. expertise in grassroots movement building and/or community-led advocacy, and have sufficient knowledge of advocacy and movement building to be able to facilitate high-quality reflective conversations on this topic 
  2. expertise in high-quality facilitation of meaningful, supportive and reflective spaces for partners to share learning, and the ability to build rapport with a diverse set of stakeholders; and  
  3. the ability to use evaluative/critical thinking to inform our understanding of the merits of different routes to change and help discover what partners might focus on in the years to come. 

Ideally, you would also have the following experience:

  1. Working directly with communities, ideally in Lambeth and/or Southwark or other areas of (ideally South) London.  
  2. Skillfully navigating power dynamics between the funder and the funded.

We would like the learning partner to be able to demonstrate the following attributes

  1. Able to be authentic, sensitive and aware of your own position within this initiative. 
  2. Reflective and able to support other people’s reflective practice without judgement. 
  3. Able to adjust your approach to respond to the needs and preferences of different people.  

We think that the following skills will be crucial to the success of this learning partnership:  

  1. Able to build positive and trusting relationships to support the learning process, but not afraid to challenge and be a critical friend when needed.   
  2. Able to ask good questions and support others in making sense of complex information.  
  3. Be responsive, adaptable and flexible – able to explore and adapt to the best way of working for this initiative. 
  4. Strong emotional intelligence, ability to understand what different people need to feel part of the process, and to take on feedback from others. 

Budgets and timelines

There is a budget of up to £50,000 including VAT available to fund the learning partner role from February 2024 for 12 months. We equally welcome individual freelancers, organisations or consortia to apply.  

For administrative reasons, your contract will be with Impact on Urban Health. However, it is essential that you develop a close working relationship with the key people involved in the amplifying voices cohort, and that this learning partnership also serves their needs and interests.   

Submitting a tender

We would request the following information be sent to by Wednesday 17th January 2024. To ensure the application process is as accessible as possible, we are keeping the requirements quite brief. Ideally in no more than 8 pages, please consider the following: 

  • Brief overview of the people/organisation/team who’ll work directly on this project. 
  • Your understanding and experience of movement building and grassroots advocacy. 
  • Evidence of recent and relevant experience around facilitation and learning with a diverse group of stakeholders. 
  • Your proposed approach to meet the requirements of this brief, with a brief outline project plan. 
  • Indicative budget including a clear breakdown of day rates. 

Please refer to the guidance in the “what are we looking for?” section above, and make it clear how you meet our requirements.

Subsequent timelines will be as follows: 

  • Application deadline: 8pm 17th January 2023 
  • 1 x 45-minute interview – week commencing 22nd January (likely 25th and 26th Jan) 
  • Appointment and contracting in early February 
  • Start date at partner’s earliest convenience, for a 12-month period. 

If there are any interim questions, please do reach out. Questions can be sent to Farid Kelekun ( 

Farid Kelekun

Submit your tender

Submit your tender by 8pm, 17th January 2023.

Submit your tender to Farid Kelekun Download the full Invitation to Tender as PDF