Former cabinet minister David Blunkett and activist Peter Tatchell were among the speakers at a conference for Southwark's active citizens held at Glaziers Hall.
The conference marked the launch of the Active Citizens' Hub at Volunteer Centre Southwark. The hub's role is to help local people to get involved in decisions and action to improve life in Southwark.
As well as supporting those who make the effort to get involved with local life, the hub will also work with providers of public services to ensure that when people make a contribution they feel they're listened to and that their contribution makes a difference.
Organisers have developed a wide definition for "active citizenship" that ranges being a school governor, joining Southwark Refugee Communities Forum, giving views at a Community Council and writing to their MP, to simple acts such as giving up a seat on a bus to someone who needs it more.
Workshops at the conference dealt with topics including 'How to Have Happy Volunteers' and 'Priorities for Black & Minority Ethnic Residents'.