Ron Bourne, Voluntary Sector Programmes Manager, Lewisham Local
Elisha Roberts, Rushey Green Community Development Worker, Lewisham Local
Councillor Krupski gave a brief overview of how the Neighbourhood Community Infrastructure levy, the tax councils charge developers, has been used in Rushey Green to recruit a dedicated community development worker for the Rushey Green ward – hot-housed at Lewisham Local. She explained how the process worked and how the assembly had influence in the decision making.
Ron Bourne talked through the Lewisham Local Rushey Green Development eco system slide which detailed how the Rushey Green development worker, Elisha Roberts, would link directly to the following outputs of Lewisham Locals current work which would add value to the Community development workers role, including, but not limited to the following:
· Funding – 4 new community fundraisers recruited around cold-spot, equalities, arts and sports
· Information – through a new community directory, community asset mapping and social prescribing
· Giving – volunteering, mentorship, cash in kind
· Strengthening communities – development advice, network development and social prescribing
· Giving a voice – Steering group, Network events, community events and the broader remit of Lewisham Local
· Connecting people – through advice and guidance, partnerships with Catbytes organisation around digital inclusion providing laptops and mobiles and Wi-Fi data
Ron detailed how Elisha’s role and explained her role will be very much as a conduit and support to many of the residents, stakeholders who are interested in and who are passionate about making change in the borough.
Ron highlighted that capacity building of new and existing groups will be a major part of Elisha’s role and a focus on identifying and supporting people and groups from seldom heard from voices in the community. They are also developing a Rushey Green community steering group, to help mould Elisha’s work in the ward over the next year and a half and hoped that some people at the meeting would be prepared to sign up to be a part of that Steering group. Ron then handed over to Elisha.
Elisha Roberts introduced herself to the community at the meeting and expressed her passion for the role and how she was very keen to get started by hearing from the residents and groups in the meeting, to begin to understand the immediate priority areas for the ward.
Elisha and Ron introduced an interactive engagement activity for the meeting attendees. People logged into ‘mentimeter.com’ to answer questions about their priorities for the area and how they would like to engage with others to help resolve some of the issues. Attendees of the meeting were able to see their opinions live on the big screen with the most common areas for improvement displaying bigger the more people identified them. Here is an example of the priorities people identified as they were displayed in the meeting.
After the activity was finished Councillor Krupski reminded attendees that this was just the start of the conversation and that Elisha will be attending future engagement activities, local events and other local forums to continue the dialogue with the community and will feedback at the next local assembly meeting if invited to do so. She also highlighted the importance of the steering group and reminded people to contact Lucy or Elisha to find out more.
There was a question around how groups delivering social prescribing projects and how these would be monitored, Elisha stated that that would be part of her role if it was agreed by the new steering group when it was convened.