The Outsiders create innovative social projects that encourage dialogue, inspire cooperation and promote community cohesion.
We work creatively with organisations to deliver innovative and inspiring ideas that address social problems and social issues. Much of our work takes the form of public event or activities, but we also provide training, write publications and talk at conferences and seminars. We also offer consultancy to organisations wishing to create new projects or services that have social value and deliver a measurable community benefit. If you would like to discuss any of our existing projects or something completely new, please Contact Us.
Nick Little, Director
Nick is a creator and designer. Nick likes to find new ways to reach communities, and is skilled at bringing wide-ranging partnerships together in original and unexpected ways. Nick’s background is in libraries, where he has worked closely with communities of interest in Norwich for a number of years.
Nick and Oz met in 2008 and have since organised over 90 Human Library events across the UK. Nick has also wrote the Council of Europe Guide to the Human Library in 2010, and trained organisers in Voronezh Russia in 2011. Most recently Nick and Ronni Abergel trained organisers from across Europe at a week-long masterclass in Lithuania in 2014. Together with Oz, The Outsiders are the most experienced Human Library Organisers in the UK.
Nick has worked as a consultant with Time to Change for men’s mental health events and wider engagement activities. Nick has also developed the Refugee Camp project that was piloted in Norwich in 2013, and has a growing interest in social enterprise. Nick is developing new concepts that will help start-ups, businesses, charities and schools to work together.
Oz Osborne, Director
Oz is an innovator and a thinker. He asks questions of himself and the people he is working with in order to ensure that there is genuine social value at the end of the project. He has a background in mental health and wellbeing consultancy, and a proven track-record of creating innovative approaches to social issues.
Oz began work at Mind in Great Yarmouth as a young person’s mentor and there developed the highly acclaimed Fitography project. While at Rethink, Oz managed the Stuff Stigma campaign, during which time he organised the first national Five Ways to Wellbeing conference, and the first independently organised Human Library in the UK. Oz has organised over 90 Human Library events and together with Nick, has become the most experienced Human Library Organiser in the UK.
Later, as a consultant with Time to Change Oz developed the Time to Change Village which has since become the national flagship community engagement activity for the campaign.
Tom Garrod, Consultant
Tom is a speaker, writer, and visionary. Tom understands from first hand experiences the complexities of tensions within communities, whether it be on a local, national, or global scale. Having seven years experience as a local councillor, Tom appreciates how some of these complexities can’t be solved but have to be managed, through an ongoing process of sharing pressures and anxieties in transparent and honest manner. Having grown up with Ataxic Cerebral Palsy, Tom assembles both his personal experiences and Local Government experience to deliver tailored talks on Special Educational Needs and Disability. Tom is also keen on Social Media, and how it can be optimised to enhance individuals sense of belonging to and purpose within a community.
Maggie Wheeler, Director
Maggie trained as a social worker and spent many years working in health and social care. She chaired Norfolk and Suffolk NHS Foundation Trust for 10 years, where she was committed to a recovery based approach to mental illness. Now mainly retired, she chairs the Norfolk and Suffolk Dementia Alliance and The Garage, a Norwich based Arts organisation with a focus on young people and inclusion.
Maggie has long been involved in campaigns for social justice and a better society. She is a strong advocate for equality and inclusion and believes that if we were all excited rather than frightened by difference the world would be a better place. She believes that most organisations and people have more that unites them than divides them, and a collaborative way of working is always best.
If you have a project for the Outsiders Get In Touch