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Chats with the Trinity team

Updated: Jul 4

Lush green vines, with fruit almost ready to harvest, outside the Trinity Centre building

A conversation with Danute Rinkeviciene (known as 'Dana').

Dana moved to the UK from Lithuania and has worked at the Trinity Centre for 23 years! She chatted with Isky Osmon, our former Chief Executive, for this interview.

Hi Dana! Thanks for taking the time out to chat so everyone can get to know you better. Lets start with how you ended up at Trinity... Can you share a bit about that?

Of course. Well, I came to the UK from Lithuania, and I started working at the Trinity Centre in the early 2000s as a relief cleaner. Then, when our caretaker, Len, retired, I took over his role.

Didn't Len work mostly evenings?

Yes! He did. I had a young family at the time but my husband and I made it work as I love working here! I work from 3pm to 8.30pm every day.

What does your role involve?

I work mainly in reception. Although the role is caretaker, it's more care of the people - of the community - as opposed to taking care of the building, which we all do!

Day to day, I'm based at reception, greeting people when they come in to find out what they need and ensure they get to the right space. I also make sure all the rooms being used each day are properly set up for activities or whatever is needed for external bookings, including providing refreshments if needed.

What changes have you noticed over the past 23 years?

Well, in terms of the building and the work, the Centre is so much busier these days. When I started, we were just a team of 4 people! It's become much busier, and at some points there have been more than 20 staff members running so many different projects here.

Have you noticed any other changes in terms of the community, our service users?

Oh yes, there is a change in the mix of different cultures in Newham over the years. Over time, some communities leave Newham and others move in. It means we have a lot of different people using our services and we get to know about lots of different cultures.

I've honestly really enjoyed working with everyone who has come through these doors! I love meeting people and find it easy to get on with people - that's why I like my job!

What's your favourite moment or memory from your time so far?

Ah there are so many! After so many years working here, it's like a second home. But one memory stands out - it's from when Paul [Centre Director] was a Community Worker, years ago. I used to love listening to him playing his guitar and singing.

Ok, a more personal question now... What is most important to you in life?

That's easy. Family. To me, family is everything. I have 5 grandchildren, aged 16, 10 (two of them are 10), 8 and 5, all of whom I just adore.

And what do you do when you're not working?

I love spending time with my family so my free/fun time all revolves around them. I really enjoy our family picnics especially. Sometimes we go to concerts or dance performances, which is always fun. And my church community [Dana attends a Lithuanian Church] is really important to me. I attend church every Sunday.

And finally, can you tell us one thing you're really good at?

Oh I'm great at baking cakes! I do love to bake and my husband is always asking me to bake more often but I just don't have the time!

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