We have been commissioned by Buckinghamshire County Council to deliver a community organising pilot project in East Wycombe, that aims to strengthen the communities in Micklefield, Totteridge and Bowerdean and improve residents’ health and well-being. Community organising builds relationships in communities to activate people and create change through collective action.
In Buckinghamshire, there has been a commitment to really listen to the community. We have undertaken 400 conversations with residents of East Wycombe, to find out what people like about living in these areas, and also find out what the issues, concerns and pressures are. We have built a local network of community leaders (people working or volunteering in local institutions) to negotiate change with decision makers to address the community’s three priority concerns – young people, housing and environment. These commitments to change were announced at a public Assembly in November 2017 with over 60 residents, community leaders and decision makers.
Now in the implementation phase of the project, we have pulled together a dynamic action plan that clearly maps out the actions for change, responsibilities, and the latest outcomes and updates which is owned and led by the community leader network. We have already seen exciting developments from the project, including new community partnerships, development of new youth provision for the area and new community funding opportunities.
Community Impact Bucks will be facilitating and supporting the community network and project during 2018-19 and will continue to work with the network and decision makers to drive forward change.
During January to March 2020 there will be a transition period to support Public Health in their role of supporting the network going forward.