Camden mayor vows to tackle 'stigma' of single parents

Cllr Sabrina Francis

Cllr Sabrina Francis is supporting Kentish Town-based charity Gingerbread - Credit: Camden Council

The mayor of Camden is hosting walking tours in aid of a Kentish Town charity for single-parent families. 

Cllr Sabrina Francis became Camden’s first Black woman mayor in May, choosing to support Gingerbread during her time in office.

The charity provides information for single parents and campaigns to reduce stigma and make services more accessible to families. 

Sabrina told the Ham&High: "I'm from a single-parent family myself and the charity has been based in the area for 50 years and their work is really important. 

"Their work has become increasingly important because people have been furloughed, and single mums tend to be in the jobs that ended up being lost over the pandemic.

She added: "Being a visual representation of somebody who comes from a single-parent family is important for me as there's still a stigma around it.

"I'm not ashamed of my family, and I want to convey to people that it's not a moral failing, it's just a circumstance. You and your children can end up anywhere, and where you start shouldn't hold you back."

The Bloomsbury councillor, whose day job is in digital engagement, said she plans on being “as audacious as possible” during her tenure. 

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She said: "It's impossible to do this role and not come out of it a changed person because you meet so many people, you hear about amazing groups doing incredible things.  

"You get to see the best of your borough. That's the kind of thing I'm looking forward to, those tiny moments that you don't expect." 

Cllr Sabrina Francis

Sabrina is Camden's first black woman mayor - Credit: Camden Council

Sabrina attended Brecknock Primary School and Camden School for Girls before studying at the University of Birmingham where she served as vice-president of the students' union. 

"I've grown up here my whole life, and I really wanted to be able to be a mayor that comes from here, and I'm aware I don't look like most mayors", she said.

"The reception I've received in the past six months has shown me how much that was needed and necessary, because people have been incredibly nice, nicer than I could have ever imagined.” 

Guided walks of Camden with the mayor

Saturday November 20, 12-2.30pm  

Saturday December 4, 12-2.30pm  

Qualified Camden tour guide Alan Hovell will lead the tours, and will meet at the Story Garden behind the British Library. 

Booking is essential, either through notjustcamden.uk/tours/wfg.html or contacting alan@notjustcamden.uk or 07510 512965. 

Donations to Gingerbread can be made on JustGiving at: https://www.justgiving.com/fundraising/mayor-camden1

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