21 new health and well­be­ing projects

Rutherglen Reformer - - News -

Peo­ple liv­ing in some of the most de­prived com­mu­ni­ties in Ruther­glen and Cam­bus­lang are ben­e­fit­ting from £ 72,000 in­vest­ment in health and well­be­ing ini­tia­tives cho­sen by them.

Burn­hill, Spring­burn, West­burn and Whit­law­burn have wel­comed 21 projects funded by South La­nark­shire Coun­cil’s par­tic­i­pa­tory bud­get.

A unique pot of money within the lo­cal author­ity, the par­tic­i­pa­tory bud­get al­lows res­i­dents and com­mu­nity groups to get in­volved in de­ci­sion mak­ing and pri­ori­tise how money is in­vested in their area.

It has seen a se­ries of im­prove­ments in all com­mu­ni­ties in­clud­ing the up­grad­ing of the Venchie in West­burn to cre­ate a lush foot­ball ground, re­fur­bish­ing the Cage sports arena in Spring­burn and im­prove­ments to the West­burn Com­mu­nity Gar­den.

Money has also funded the in­tro­duc­tion of a baby and tod­dler group and two ac­tiv­i­ties for pre-fives, as well as fam­ily fun ses­sions of­fer­ing be­spoke out­door play ex­pe­ri­ences for pre-fives and par­ents.

Six youth club pro­grammes have been sup­ported, in­clud­ing a res­i­den­tial trip for young peo­ple, and a sec­ond for both chil­dren and par­ents,

Two com­mu­nity hubs will be es­tab­lished, with their own re­sources and equip­ment, whilst a com­mu­nity fun day will be held to pro­mote com­mu­nity spirit.

A se­ries of ini­tia­tives to get peo­ple ac­tive have also been funded in­clud­ing try a sport ses­sions - to en­cour­age early in­volve­ment in sport - and week­end foot­ball.

The 21 projects - many of which have al­ready been im­ple­mented - won fi­nan­cial back­ing af­ter re­ceiv­ing sup­port from the com­mu­nity.

Al­most 400 peo­ple across the four com­mu­ni­ties took part in dis­cus­sions about how to build safer, health­ier com­mu­ni­ties and took part in Com­mu­nity De­ci­sion Mak­ing Days when res­i­dents learned more about po­ten­tial projects. Ini­tia­tives were then pri­ori­tised for fund­ing through a vot­ing sys­tem.

Pauline El­liot, South La­nark­shire Coun­cil’s head of plan­ning and eco­nomic devel­op­ment, said: “The way in which lo­cal peo­ple and com­mu­ni­ties have em­braced and re­sponded to this op­por­tu­nity has been fan­tas­tic. The level of par­tic­i­pa­tion has been in­cred­i­ble across all the neigh­bour­hoods, par­tic­u­larly among chil­dren and young peo­ple.

“There is no doubt that par­tic­i­pa­tory bud­get­ing has been a very ef­fec­tive and pos­i­tive way of bring­ing lo­cal peo­ple to­gether with com­mu­ni­ties lead­ing on lo­cal pri­or­ity set­ting, de­ci­sion mak­ing and al­lo­ca­tion of funds. Lo­cal peo­ple are help­ing to bring about and de­liver a whole range of projects that will bring last­ing and pos­i­tive changes in their neigh­bour­hoods.”

Youth clubs op­er­at­ing Burn­hill, Spring­burn, West­burn and Whit­law­burn were vi­tal in se­cur­ing the views of younger peo­ple, with pri­mary and sec­ondary school aged chil­dren also given a vote, and en­cour­aged to take part in dis­cus­sion groups.

Youth Chil­dren com­pleted sur­veys with res­i­dents in their area and handed out leaflets about the par­tic­i­pa­tory bud­get

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