Over the last six months, we have taken a new Community Led Approach to working with local people and organisations across Calderdale. We have held successful workshops in six local areas so far; Rastrick, Mixenden, Park Ward, Cornholme, Ovenden, Illingworth & Lee Mount, and Sowerby Bridge & Sowerby, providing an opportunity for local people and local organisations to connect with each other and work together to tackle physical inactivity.
This new approach has evolved from the work we have been doing with communities in Calderdale since Active Calderdale began. Through this work, we identified a need to work in smaller areas and in a more targeted way. We wanted to enable local communities to have more input and involvement in our mission to reduce physical activity inequality across the Borough. To facilitate this, specific investment pots have been allocated to 10 local areas across Calderdale, and our Community Led Approach will allow local people to decide how that money is spent.
In each of the six local areas, our Community Project Managers (CPMs) – Sofie, Emma and Anthony – talked to local people and organisations to learn about the local community and understand some of their specific challenges relating to physical activity. Knowing that each local area was unique, the CPMs recognised the importance of building strong relationships with local people.
I realised very quickly that the building relationships side of it was integral to all of this. I know that sounds obvious, but realising, finding out in a bit more depth the issues of the area, […] and it really being hammered home to me what those issues were, and that they're real, they're people's lives.Active Calderdale Community Project Manager
The CPMs then held workshops in each area to give local people and organisations the time and space to meet each other, network, and start to think about the potential physical activity opportunities in their community. Those who attended the workshops thought that they provided a valuable networking opportunity and chance to build fruitful relationships.
As one of the oldest people at this workshop [I liked] how uplifting it was for me to find myself talking to so many people who are enthusiastic about the present and future of our community here in North Halifax. Thank you for organising this event.Workshop Attendee
Following the workshops, the CPMs supported local people and organisations to work together and create proposals for local projects that could help their community become more physically active. In each area, a small group of local people volunteered to form a Community Panel. The Community Panels are now responsible for making the final decisions about which projects will benefit local people and should therefore receive Active Calderdale investment.
So far 16 new physical activity proposals have received investment. Exciting projects like a guided nature walk, an outdoor fitness class for new parents, Yoga classes, walking football for older adults and many more have been given the funding they need to get started and get people more active across Calderdale.
Really enjoyed this evening’s first yoga class at Vale Baptist Church. Nice group run by the lovely Debs. Got more out of it than I anticipated. Great that we have this opportunity on our doorstep. Will defo be back with my daughters-in-law next week.Yoga Class Participant
Project proposals continue to flood in, and our CPMs are preparing to start work in the remaining four areas that have been allocated investment for this approach.
If you would like to find out more about the Community Led Approach in your area, please contact the relevant CPM below:
(Rastrick; Elland; Brighouse; Hipperholme & Lightcliffe; Park; Warley)
(Cornholme; Sowerby, Sowerby Bridge & Ryburn; Boothtown, Siddal & Town Centre)
(Mixenden; Ovenden & Illingworth)