11 Aug £3m lottery grant to help communities in Great Yarmouth thrive
A pioneering project that allows people to take the lead in their community – while supporting them with skills and training – is being launched in Great Yarmouth after the town hall was awarded £3m of Lottery funding.
The cash boost has been used to set up the Neighbourhoods that Work scheme, which joins together groups already working in the borough to improve public services. It will also see the introduction of new “connectors” – residents who can help people face-to-face with issues and ideas, such as how to set up a new mother and baby group or how to brush up their CV, and send them to the right place where they can get further support.
The scheme, which it is hoped will become a model that can be rolled out across the UK, brings together groups including Voluntary Norfolk, Business in the Community, Great Yarmouth and Waveney Mind and GYROS to enable them to provide more linked-up support for residents. It will also allow the teams to provide a more 24/7 service so people can get help when they need it in a bid to stop them from falling into a crisis.
The Lottery funding has been handed to Great Yarmouth Borough Council, which is managing the scheme, but town hall bosses have stressed the work will be led by existing groups already working on the ground.
Robert Read, director of housing and neighbourhoods, said the scheme did not intend to be a sweeping regeneration of areas but aimed to build on the strengths that already exist in the borough. “People thrive in communities that are well connected. It’s not our job to go in and fix communities,” he added. “Our starting point is that communities are full of people that can provide those connections that can make them stronger.
“Public services can generally improve because they’re shaped by what people need and the economy can be driven forwards – not by large scale regeneration but by communities doing it themselves.”
The £3.075m project is initially funded to run for five years and is broken into three strands; helping communities to develop their ideas for improving people’s quality of life; helping existing services to work better together to support vulnerable people; and helping people into training, volunteering and work.
The scheme officially starts in October.
this news story was provided by great yarmouth mercury