INVERCLYDE 'Our Place Our Future' Project Gives Residents A Chance To Have Their Say

A CALL-to-action is going out to Inverclyde residents to determine what they want to see happen in their local communities and get them thinking about how they can make it a reality.

The area-wide conversation is being generated by Our Place Our Future, a project that will delve into a wide range of themes from traffic, parking, streets and spaces, to work, care, housing and local amenities. 

This, its first phase, is being co-ordinated and delivered by local community planning partnership, the Inverclyde Alliance, with funding support from the Big Lottery Fund Awards for All Scotland. Opinion will be gathered over the next two months via a survey and series of community events.

Although the Our Place Our Future survey covers 14 key topics and can be completed in print form or online, respondents can also give feedback on specific questions of relevance to them. 

The survey, which is now live and will run until Friday 30 June 2017, can be completed at: www.surveymonkey.co.uk/r/OurPlaceOurFuture

Hard copies can be downloaded from the Community Planning Partnership page and are available from participating organisations in the Inverclyde Alliance. Surveys will also be issued via tenants and residents' associations, community councils, action groups, sports clubs and youth groups.

The Inverclyde Alliance survey team are also reaching out through community events at which they will have the opportunity to spark thoughts and discussions by meeting people face to face.

“There couldn’t be a better time for us to engage with our local community and work together through the Inverclyde Alliance,” said Ian Bruce, chief executive of voluntary sector representatives, CVS Inverclyde.

“With services facing financial challenges, the new Community Empowerment Act brings opportunity, making it easer for communities to take the lead on local improvements through the ownership of public buildings and land, and by their hands-on input to the design of services. Survey results will feed into the Inverclyde Community Planning Partnership’s Local Outcome Improvement Plan for the area and inform the initial drafts of Locality Plans, which are a requirement of the Community Empowerment Act.

“While some people are always involved in their local community, we are reaching out to mobilise many more. We can help them identify what is important in terms of their community needs, explore opportunities and consider how they can contribute to help make a real difference –- such as volunteering with others to collectively improve their surroundings.

“Research shows that the way a place looks, functions and feels can influence so many factors, not least of all health and wellbeing. Connecting people and giving them the space and tools to take action on their own behalf, will strengthen how our community works better together in the future.”

Our Place Our Future community events start with a day-long drop-in at Greenock Town Hall on Wednesday 10 May, from 10am to 7pm at which partners from Inverclyde Alliance will be on hand to hear views, discuss opportunities and encourage participation in the survey. Similar activities are planned in the Oak Mall Shopping Centre and local supermarkets, with events in community centres to hone in on more localised matters.

Survey themes cover moving around and public transport; traffic, parking, streets and spaces; natural space, play and recreation; facilities and amenities; work and the local economy; housing and community; social interaction, identity and belonging; feeling safe; care and maintenance; plus influence and sense of control.

“With survey feedback used to develop our Local Outcome Improvement Plan, its results will help inform good decision-making, allowing resources to be targeted where they are most needed and delivering better outcomes for everyone over the long term,” said Miriam McKenna, corporate policy and partnership manager, Inverclyde Council. “That’s why we want to encourage as many Inverclyde residents as possible to take part in Our Place Our Future, to ensure they have their say on topics that directly affect them and their community.”

Once the review is complete at the end of June, responses will be analysed over the summer with results announced this autumn. People can also join in the Inverclyde conversation by Tweeting #OurPlaceOurFuture. 

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