We developed Our Great Start in conjunction with the Wheatley Group as they sought to provide support residents in new build neighbourhoods, where they often lack a sense of identity and belonging.
Working with residents in three areas of Glasgow (North Toryglen, Kingsway and Barmulloch) the aim was to co-create a programme of activities, events and support to help build a community environment and reduce feelings of dislocation and isolation.
We initially worked with residents from 100 homes in North Toryglen who had moved from multi-storey flats to new build properties as part of The Wheatley Group’s wider regeneration programme across Glasgow.
According to Understanding Glasgow, Toryglen is an area of significant deprivation, with low levels of income, high unemployment, low health, low education and higher than average crime figures.
‘Our Great Start’ was an opportunity to energise the community’s potential and make a positive contribution to the regeneration and development of this area.
Our asset based approach to community development helped identify strengths within the community, empowering local people to lead change. This was achieved by:
- Holding community meetings to hear what activities they thought would bring the community together
- Providing small scale funding to residents to start new activities and encourage them to shape where they live
- Developed leadership from within the community to lead activities
- Running community events bringing local people together to make connections and encourage them to get involved and contribute to shaping their new community, including a trip to Blair Drummond Safari and Adventure Park
- Assisting in activity planning such as family trips and community workshops
- Providing training on asset-based community development
- ‘It has brought the people in the community closer’ Lisa, local resident
- ‘It has given the organisations in Toryglen an opportunity to look to the future’ Eveline, Toryglen Community Hall
- ‘Hopefully reduced the divide in the community between organisations’ Sandra, Toryglen Community Base
- Creation of a community voice through a new community group
- Appointment of 3 community leaders to develop local approaches and services, strengthening individual and group confidence
- Implemented a sustainable programme by building a community network, offering engagement opportunities and reducing the feeling of isolation and dislocation
- Creation of a social media platform and door to door campaigns to update on activities and encourage continual involvement by residents – 4 new events have taken place so far.