Arriving in Wales in 2003, the last decade has been a steady decline in my local area. Being blessed with CONWY COUNTY COUNCIL as the ‘organisers’ and budget control comes with a huge down side. I tried countless times to get access to a community property list, similar as FLINTHSIRE COUNTY COUNCIL pro actively share to attract social projects.
But CONWY doesn’t even want to communicate with you. Went to see an Assembly Member – promises to write to CCBC and get some answers. Three months later, the mail man must have lost it. So I thought let’s go across Denbighshire County and see if we can make any progress in FLINTSHIRE.
The good news is yes, progress. But it is stagnantly slow and will not achieve the rapid outcomes required to address so many social issues in my beloved Wales.
So we found this fantastic property in MOLD. It is on the slide – and the Council doesn’t seem to have a plan, or money what to do with it. It is currently used as a community centre, albeit not 100% occupied. This seems like a great idea. So I pulled some people together, and we started with the process of formulating a business plan.
For any social project to work, we need to get some feed back from the local community – and hopefully some pro active involvement.
And this (in my opinion) is where Wales fails. Daily.
Although the business proposal to turn Glanrafon into a community focused (and managed) centre looks not only sustainable, but actually profitable – I just can’t seem to get anyone wishing to communicate with me.
Alas, negative energy seems to be what is plentiful.
As we stand here in September 2016 I am unsure if the costs I incurred, with the time spent on going to Lottery meetings, business consultants and funding professionals, local FLINTSHIRE meetings and networking events was worth the effort.
I send an email out 10 days ago – I have had one reply. Apparently (no confirmation as people not there) this has been circulated in the FLINTSHIRE COMMUNITY third sector and community projects.
So what to do ? Work where you are clearly on your own, or find a more responsive ‘community ?
Community Hubs – Digital HQs
The concept of creating community hubs is not new. In fact, from Fishguard to Northumberland, I have visited over a dozen such projects whilst researching what proposals we should place in a formal business plan.
Using what I have seen working, effective and profitable and adding a digital element to a community managed and focused hub would really enhance the local tourism sector, community projects and ‘business’ in general. I can see it. Am I blind ?
What might sound like a ‘moan’ isn’t really the case. If we just sit back and wait for things to happen – nothing happens. I don’t even live in Flintshire but I can’t seem to generate enough interest locally to justify investing hundreds of hours to ‘attempt’ contact.
I am giving this a last push to see if there is any response, but if this fails to illicit any reaction – it will be time to move on.
The DIGITAL aspect I was hoping to include is firstly a social media focus to allow for an all inclusive approach in a community marketing engine. You should check out the post on SMM framework and WALES DAILY frame to get some background in how communities can help themselves.
In addition, within a community, we should focus on OPEN SOURCE digital development. It is the only way forward should we wish to make web publishing accessible to everyone.
I can already sense the objections from the expensive service providers. But that is a story for another day.
Fingers crossed GLANRAFON was time well spent.
If not, it’s nothing new. I live in Colwyn Bay.