Big Local Rep’s Update

April to June 2017

Running things

This has been another very busy and successful three months for the partnership. Edith Lang took over from Joe Russo as chair and the Local Trusted Organisation responsibilities were taken on by Rebecca Manship at Enthusiasm, who is also an ABL resident and on the partnership. These changes are important and, though they may take a while to bed in, they are crucial for the enduring health of Allenton Big Local. Helen Falconbridge and Sharon Sewell have been co-opted onto the partnership and Cath Harcula has stepped down after a fantastic period on the partnership championing adult learning.

The partnership is always looking to improve how it does things. Four actions come to mind since April. First, the Local Trusted Organisation now gives a short financial report to the partnership each month along with the facts and figures. Second, a thorough review process is now in place through sub-groups which consider key review questions and present summary findings to the wider partnership. Third, a revised wording has been included in newly issued partner agreements to make sure strong safeguarding procedures are in place. Fourth, the partnership reviewed the annual survey results and felt that the negative change in how people perceived the safety of the area was a reflection of national trends. It agreed to up the number surveys done each year to a minimum of 200.

Doing things

The latest newsletter is on line and was delivered to all households, detailing many recent successes and forthcoming plans.

Work has started on the community centre at St Martin’s revamp through a DIY-SOS-style community project led by Hodgkinson Builders and supported by Allenton Big Local and Derby Homes. A contractors’ open day was held in June and Carl Willis and Mairi Radcliffe have helped leverage in at least three times the value in goods and services of the £70,000 catalyst from Allenton Big Local. Signing the deal took care to make sure all parties were happy. A two day showcase will be held in September and a national Big Local event in October will act as a curtain raiser.

Other achievements include ABL taking part in the busy and well supported Osmaston Park event. It provided an opportunity to promote Allenton Big Local to people living in the area. Families in Allenton continue to benefit from cookery courses aimed at providing practical advice on healthy eating, basic cooking skills and budgeting information. The Allenton Community Support parent group produced a booklet that contains the six favourite recipes from the cookery course delivered by the Nacro Osmaston Family Project.

The Job Club at Allen Park, delivered by Derby Adult Learning, continues to grow. On average, 14 people attend the club each week with a high proportion from the Allenton Big Local area. And finally, as well as delivering regular weekly youth club sessions at St Martin’s Community Centre, the Enthusiasm Trust has recently been delivering pop-up outreach work within the Allenton Big Local Area

Looking ahead

Developments at St Martin’s take centre stage over the coming three months with work having started, mains supplies having been disconnected or rerouted and the digger having started to dig!

In the autumn, St Martin’s hosts a national event on involving young people in Big Local which will also give people taking part the chance to see how local amenities can be radically developed through vision and partnership and excellent project management.

Working well

The recent activity reports show the quality and impact of work being funded by Allenton Big Local making a significant difference in the lives of local residents. These reports are reviewed by the partnership and then posted online and include the stats and the stories to demonstrate outputs and outcomes with children and young people and their families, with young people and with those seeking to further their training and job opportunities. Some of the reporting is very innovative, such as the young people’s video record of the impact of the Enthusiasm youth club sessions.

I wrote to the partnership recently saying:

“It is a tribute to you as a partnership in how you encourage and require of partners a clear demonstration of what’s been done with resident money and what are the outcomes achieved. Recording and reporting can feel a right pain, but when done openly and thoroughly they add to the work itself; within Allenton Big Local of course they make it possible to account for, to share and to celebrate the specific achievements as well as overall progression of your vision.”