KEEN Oxford

KEEN Oxford

At a glance


  • Children / families
  • Health and well being / research and care
  • Learning disabilities / difficulties
  • Local / community
  • Physical disabilities
  • Young people

Other details

Geographical remit: 


KEEN exists because people with additional needs are still not fully included in our communities, with equal access to the opportunities of their peers. The negative outcomes of exclusion for this group are well researched and reported, including for physical health, mental health, and general wellbeing, making this an urgent issue to tackle. We work closely with our partners in Oxford - including the Oxfordshire Community Foundation, Active Oxfordshire, Oxford City Council, Oxfordshire County Council - to identify which specific areas of Oxford have the greatest needs.

In order to tackle this challenge, we are constantly innovating, trialling inventive solutions, and questioning the status quo - we take pride in doing things differently! Our approach is focused on engaging people to play a central role in social change and  effective partnership work, including collaboration on the big persistent and systemic issues our beneficiaries face.

Our yearly programme of regular sessions and projects (over 200 in 2018/19) provided 2700 hours of individual contact time to beneficiaries in 2017 and 3700 hours in 2018. We are now on target to exceed 5500 hours in 2019. Over 200 beneficiaries have participated in this programme in the last year. This programme includes a wide range of sporting, social, and recreational activities and is fully inclusive. We cater for beneficiaries with an extremely wide range of additional needs including profound and multiple learning disabilities, and are able to provide 1-to-1 support where required. Our sessions are supported by a large number of session buddies (an increasing number of whom have additional needs themselves), who give around 4,000 hours of their time each year.


KEEN is about fantastic opportunities for everyone, but particularly those children and adults with a physical or learning disability,or special need. Our work is focused around our innovative and inclusive session programme and projects, in which anyone can participate. We are currently looking for Session Coaches to help support these sessions. At sessions, coaches support our participants either one-to-one or in a small group, helping them to engage in all the activities, while having a lot of fun yourself, obviously. Coaches are also welcome to help plan and lead individual sessions, at which point they achieve the lofty title of 'Session Leader'. 


Sessions which you could help out at are detailed below. However, if none of that sounds for you, then do get in touch anyway and we will see if we can find the perfect opportunity for you. 

KEEN Teens: Monday 17:50-19:20 @ St. Clements
- Aimed at teenagers, KEEN Teens is a social club that gets up to all sorts of shenanigans, including baking, science experiments, challenges, a multitude of games and even murder mystery nights! This term, we have a group completing the Young Enterprise Team programme alongside the usual KEEN Teens programme.

GrEAT Social: Monday 19:30-21:30 @ St. Clements
- GrEAT Social is our fun, easygoing social club for over-18s, featuring everything from pub quizzes, park picnics and games nights, to arts and crafts, karaoke nights and visits from birds of prey!

GrEAT Sports: Tuesday 19:00-20:00 @ Blackbird Leys
- GrEAT Sports is our multisports club for over-18s. A new sport is introduced every three weeks, allowing participants to get a good introduction, develop new skills and keep active. Keeping it varied, we’ve had everything from hockey, football and tennis, to martial arts, archery and zumba!

Zig-Zag: Thursday 17:10-18:30 @ St. Clement's
- Zig-Zag is our weekly performing arts session aimed at children aged 4-11. Each session features an exciting mash-up of music, dance, arts and crafts and games. Every term follows a different theme led by our volunteer leaders, covering anything from nursery rhymes to Horrible Histories myths and legends to Hollywood blockbusters. All are strung together by a story, complete with costumes and props.

AllSorts: Saturday 14:00-17:00 @ Blackbird Leys
- Allsorts is our sports session for participants aged 4-25. 'Athletes' (our participants) rotate between three activities from a wide range of sports, ranging from traditional to the more unusual. Each activity is led by an experienced Session Leader who plans the session to suit all abilities.

KEEN+: Any time and any place!
- In addition to our regular sessions, we also run a variety of special events and daytrips throughout the terms, such as ice skating, swimming, theatre trips, museum visits and more. 

Allotment Project: Regular afternoons during the week @ Florence Park
- Our latest project at KEEN! We are looking for people to support our participants as they work at our new allotment at Elder Stubbs to grow lots of tasty vegetables! This may also involve trips to a farmer's market, cooking sessions and so on.

INK: Friday 10:00-13:00 @ St Clement's
- Come and take part in creative art workshops for over 18’s as part of our participant led social enterprise, INK! Now in its second year, INK Oxford is empowering young people with disabilities to develop artistic talent and to learn professional skills which can lead to future employment. Disabled young people and allies participate in a bespoke programme that teaches the fundamentals of art and design as well as embark on a unique employability program.

No current opportunities

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