Community Centres provided people with the opportunity to work and organise together for the benefit of their local communities, including adult education social, cultural activities, and a meeting place for voluntary organisations or other groups in the community which need accommodation.
In a nutshell:
Riverside Community Centre is a facility for the whole of the Malmesbury Community Area and was recently refurbished specifically for community use. The building is being provided by Wiltshire Council, as part of their ‘Health & Wellbeing Centre’ programme, however the unique factor of this centre is that it will be handed over to the community and managed by a group of volunteers.
Friends of Riverside are a bunch of like-minded community members who have all brought something different to the group. To secure their identity and aspirations the ‘Friends’ have obtained status as a charitable incorporated organisation with the Charity Commission, opened a bank account, website and produce a monthly newsletter.
This group of local people have been working with Wiltshire Council for a few years to bring about this new venue for the Malmesbury Community Area. To ensure the communities voice has been heard in the development of the refurbishments to the building. Their aspirations as a group are not limited to running the Community Centre alone.
What makes this project special:
Friends of Riverside aim to liaise with other village hall groups etc, so that events happening in one place, may be repeated in others and more people will have the opportunity to enjoy them. They are also interested in promoting Community Area wide projects.
Believing this is especially important because of the rural nature of the area where some people find it difficult to travel because of transport issues or because of age, frailty or mobility issues. They are aware that there are community groups throughout the whole Malmesbury Area who would like a little support and we hope to be able to assist with this.
Friends of Riverside wish to promote wellbeing and community cohesion through people’s involvement in activities together. Spreading ‘the love’ as the saying goes, bringing people together and making our communities stronger and more resilient.
How you can replicate this project where you live:
• Engage local community members interested in running a centre
• Ideally have a range of experience in this group
• Look at options to formalize the group: ie; charitable status, bank account
• Involve the local community in shaping the future of any facility
Find out more and get in touch: http://www.riversidecommunitycentre.org.uk/
Support from your local community engagement manager:
You can access documents, templates and funding advice from your local community engagement manager to help get your project started: