KEEN London logo  The KEEN London Newsletter
issue 7, October 2011
A huge hello to all our athletes, coaches, families, friends and supporters. Welcome to the new term at KEEN London! It’s going to be a busy few months of fun, fundraising and festive celebrations. All the details are below but please check our website for the most up-to-date information.
This term, we’ve already started having fun in the run-up to another spectacular Christmas party with lots of opportunities to find everyone’s hidden talent, or just enjoy some inspiring shows.

A magical time was had by all when we welcomed Peter Gardini to our session on 16 October. There are lots more details on his bewitching performance here and you can find out more about him here.

KEEN magic KEEN magic KEEN magic

We’ve got an amazing trip planned on October 30th, to see a concert by the  extraordinary autistic pianist Derek Paravicini. Also known as “the Human Ipod”, Derek is famous around the world for his musical talent. If you’d like to learn more about Derek before the trip, have a look here:

The Magician's DaughterThen, on November 20th, we’ll be going to the Jacksons Lane Theatre to see a performance of The Magician’s Daughter by the Little Angel Theatre Company.  Written by the acclaimed poet Michael Rosen, the show uses puppetry and song to bring the story of Shakespeare’s The Tempest to life. More details can be found on the Jacksons Lane Theatre website.

Budding acrobats, jugglers and clowns will be having a ball on November 27th at our Circus Skills workshop and the session the following week will be tinsel-tastic as we make our Christmas decorations, just in time for…

KEEN's Got Talent
Following on the success of last year’s incredible performances, this year’s Christmas party will give everyone a chance to showcase their showbiz potential with another round of KEEN’S GOT TALENT.

So, learn some jokes, polish your dancing shoes and warm up your vocal chords because we really want to give the X Factor a run for its money.  We can’t promise a record deal or a concert at Wembley, but everyone will get a warm reception, maybe even a standing ovation!

The KEEN CookbookTopping everyone’s Christmas gift list this year will, of course, be The KEEN London Cookbook.  Featuring recipes provided by athletes, coaches and friends of KEEN, it has something for everyone — from fairy cakes to everything you need for a four course meal!

The book also features some amazing photographs taken at our cooking session last term and beautiful illustrations from our art session. At only £10 a copy, it’s the ideal Christmas gift with all profits going to KEEN. See Cameron to reserve your copy now!

GLL logoWhen Summer finally arrived — in October! — we couldn't think of a better way to celebrate than with a swim!

So we headed straight for Swiss Cottage Leisure Centre on Sunday 9 October where we once again had exclusive use of their teaching pool for the afternoon. There was no shortage of excitement among the 22 athletes and 34 coaches who splashed, raced and paddled the afternoon away.

Ed J, John-Jo and Toby were scuba-stars while Jonathan and Andrew were right at home playing spaceships and pirates on the high seas. Even less confident swimmers like Gabby and John all made a splash. Next stop London 2012!! Read the full story...

Still time to GO FOR GOLD
Gold Challenge logoExcitement is building about London 2012 and there’s still time to join in the spirit of the Olympics and raise funds for KEEN with the Gold Challenge.

The Gold Challenge gives you the chance to test your sporting prowess by trying out Olympic sports. You can take part as an individual or a team, it’s easy to get involved and there are three fantastic challenges to choose from. All the details can be found at:

And, if you’d like to take part as a family or a school group, the Youth And Family Gold Challenge is designed to include anyone aged 7–15. Check it out at

Half Marathon
One of our coaches, Akvile, took part in the Run to the Beat half-marathon in September.  Akvile made a great time of 1hr 55minutes and raised £140 for KEEN.

At KEEN London, we couldn't do any of this great work without our volunteers, fund-raisers and sponsors. We are also very interested in talking to companies who can provide services in kind. If you'd like to help with any of our activities, contact or call 07858 899066.


Sunday 30 October: concert outing to see Derek Paravicini — 'the Human iPod'!

Sunday 20 November: The Magician's Daughter at Jacksons Lane Theatre.

Sunday 27 November: Circus Workshop

Sunday 4 December: Art Attack — making Christmas decorations for...

Sunday 11 December: KEEN's Got Talent Christmas Party

... Hannah
Hannah is a recent recruit to KEEN.  She joined us in March and has been hooked ever since. She has spent the past six years bringing up her two children while studying for her BSc and is now applying for a medicine degree.

Hannah loves everything about KEEN. She says, “It feels like a family, a safe place where the kids are free to enjoy themselves without fear and everyone is made to feel welcome – athletes, parents and coaches alike.” Her favourite moment so far was in her first session when Manoli got her to tickle his foot so he could enjoy a good giggle. No wonder she was hooked!

In her spare time, Hannah also enjoys reading, singing and African dance so look out for her at KEEN’s Got Talent!

Our featured coach is Hannah

... Jonathan
Jonathan has been coming to KEEN sessions for 18 months and his mum, Anna, belives they have made a huge difference to him.  She says, “KEEN has been wonderful for Jonathan. The sessions have helped him to develop his social understanding and become more open to trying different activities. Over the summer holidays, he initiated interaction with other children and enjoyed playing with them which is something that he would never have done before.

“He looks forward to the sessions all week and often asks when he is going to ‘Keen Club’ to see Cameron and the coaches, who are fun grown-ups.”

Jonathan’s favourite activities are basketball, football and trampolining. He also enjoys drawing and painting. As he says, "KEEN is great because I have two grown-ups to play with me and have lots of fun.”

our featured athlete is Jonathan

17 August 2011
As KEEN has its own holiday over the summer school break, we don't usually run any events. But when Autism London kindly offered a trip to Legoland to our athletes, we jumped at the chance!

Autism London logoLegoland logo

For many this was a totally new experience and one they were unlikely to forget. Lukas really loved making his own Lego characters, while Stefan, after the 4D movie said, "I've never seen anything like it!" Sam and his parents Ingrid and Gordon loved the trip saying it was "nice to go with other families/ volunteers who are familiar with children with special needs." Nathan's mum Lisa was just so happy that with help of her volunteer (Kaush) her son was able to engage and enjoy it. All agreed that being able to fast track through queues made such an important difference to the children's experiences. A big thank you Ethney and Autism London who organised the event and to everyone who helped make it an amazing trip. See the photos...

KEEN London is a registered charity, number 1124915. It is also a limited company registered in England (number 6579658), and its registered office is 12 City Forum, 250 City Road, London EC1V 2PU

© KEEN London 2012