January 7, 2015 at 10:33 am #9208
From 12-16 January, you can drop in to this thread at any point to have a chat and share your experiences about your project.
We are celebrating the New Year by going for a theme of planning for the year ahead in a series of three live chats.
Diaries out, folks, here’s how the week looks:
• On Tuesday 13 January from 3:30-4pm, we’re talking New Year’s Resolutions. We want you to talk about your project, reflect on 2014 and let us know what you’ve got coming up in 2015.
• On Wednesday 14 January from 10:30-11:30am, we’ll be talking plans of action – how does your organisation plan for what’s coming up? We’re looking for your advice and experiences on writing plans and getting organised.
• On Thursday 15 January from 1-1:30pm we’ll be having a lunchtime chat about how to turn your ideas into a reality – we want you to share how you transformed your plans into real-life community activity.
The discussion will be open all week, so pop in at any time. Or, you can drop in to the above slots when we’ll be on-hand for a live exchange with other groups. This is a great chance for you to find out about other community projects from all over the country.
If you’ve any questions or need any technical support or advice, drop us an email on Communications@cdf.org.uk or give me a call on 0207 812 5431.January 12, 2015 at 12:08 pm #9227
Couple of bits from me. Firstly, if you hit ‘Subscribe’, you can sign up to handy email notifications whenever someone replies to the topic, so you’ll never miss a comment.
And secondly, as we’ve mentioned before, for the first time this week we’re leaving the topic open all week, so you can drop in at any point and share your experiences.
My first question, then, to get us started: what is the most exciting thing your community project did in 2014?
LizzyJanuary 12, 2015 at 1:45 pm #9229
Maureen Doyle here from http://www.Practicemakesperfect.org.uk
We introduce Sign language and other communications skills to people of all ages
including children… we are Children’s university approved destination.
Our most exciting thing that we achieved last year was that MY DVD
“A workshop to learn the basics of Sign language” is being used in a German
Deaf school, where the teacher Stefan is introducing oral English and British
signing using British grammar. He also uses SignWriting… this is a method of
writing down any countries sign language.
Attachments:You must be logged in to view attached files.January 12, 2015 at 3:30 pm #9231
Fantastic news – sounds like you’ve had a great year.
Is anyone else brave enough to chip in? I’d really love to hear about your achievements from 2014!
LizzyJanuary 13, 2015 at 3:31 pm #9236
Hello and welcome to the first of this week’s live chats. I’m here from now until 4pm and I’ll be firing out questions about your community projects.
Who else is here? I was wondering if you could start us off by telling us a little bit about your project and your role.January 13, 2015 at 4:52 pm #9244
Hi everyone! Sorry for arriving late I had a meeting at 3pm. So I work at Nucleus Arts in Kent, and am the Education and Community Development Coordinator. I also run my own arts org called Creatabot. I specialise in helping this who are socially isolated and am a funding advisor also. Currently I am waiting to hear back for funding for an older peoples project which will involve running free art classes for over 55’s. Also I am hoping to receive funding to run performing arts workshops for people who are disabled. Basically I have completed 4 funding applications in the last week haha!!!
I also run workshops for the local home ed network.
I have found that piloting projects is the best way to get them funded and find out issues early on so that your funded project can run more successfully.
January 13, 2015 at 4:58 pm #9246
- This reply was modified 2 years, 6 months ago by Natasha.
Thanks Natasha, great to have you here – sounds like you really know what you’re talking about.
Do you have any top tips for running a lot of projects at once? Is there any advice you wish you knew before, that you’ll be using in 2015?
LizzyJanuary 13, 2015 at 5:23 pm #9247
Yes lots of projects on the go! I use a piece of software called Todoist – which was recommended to me by another community catalyst. You create lists and deadlines within the system plus you can add or check things at any time using the app. It is great when I can’t remember what I need to do next and also because it means my head doesn’t buzz as much as it is all there.
I have always valued collaboration, but never as much as I do now, amazing things can happen because both parties put their energy in rather than just you.
What I have learnt in 2014 which I wish I knew this time last year – don’t doubt your own ability too much if you have the experience. You might think that everyone else has so much more experience than you, but that are likely either winging it or struggling as much as you might be, so never thing there is an expert out there with everything under control. The more “experts” you meet in this field the more you find actually not a great deal changes apart from experience – there will always be someone who is more disorganised than you haha!
I also learnt more about making a project sustainable, and even more not to let other peoples negativity get to you!January 14, 2015 at 9:32 am #9250
This is all wonderful advice, Natasha. Thanks so much for sharing!
A reminder that our second live chat of the week will start right here, today at 10:30-11am. Here’s a sneak peek at what we’ll be chatting about…January 14, 2015 at 10:31 am #9251
Welcome to the live chat, I’ll be here until 11 to find out about your community projects.
Who’s here? Could you start us off by introducing yourself and your project, and tell us what you’ve got coming up in 2015?
LizzyJanuary 14, 2015 at 11:44 am #9252
I work on “The Wellside” a community-orientated project at Holy Trinity Church in Tottenham. Yesterday, I sat down with my boss (the Vicar), and we gave a whole day over to planning and strategy and making sure we were clear of our priorities. It seemed like a lot of time to set aside, but I know it will save time in misunderstanding later. Knowing our priorities gives us a good reason to say ‘no’ to things that don’t further our aims.
Does anyone have any tips for developing strategy as a team? I struggle to get volunteers together to plan our after school club – they tend to think they can leave me to it…
MatthewJanuary 14, 2015 at 3:14 pm #9258
Thanks so much for this Matthew, that all sounds great – what projects have you got planned for 2015?
Does anyone here have any advice for Matthew?
January 15, 2015 at 6:16 am #9262
- This reply was modified 2 years, 6 months ago by Elizabeth.
I am part of an Our Place team looking at our community as a whole and how we can become a more self reliant neighbourhood, I will be looking to recruit lots of volunteers into our projects and understand the difficulties in finding great volunteers and then retaining them.
I have been running our Job Club for 18 months and have an amazing team of 10 volunteers, we hold meetings every 4 months (as you say it is tricky to get everyone together) I usually hold them straight after a job club session and I provide lunch as an incentive to stay on, maybe you could provide tea after the after school club?
I also quickly assessed the strengths in the volunteer team and have quietly given people extra responsibilities, eg we have a Head volunteer, ensuring they have someone to go and discuss issues with if I am not there, we have a volunteer who makes sure all the administration is done, photocopying, updating our boards etc, an ex policeman looks at our security and I always ask him to have a read through new forms and data sharing documents, a youth volunteers that all the young people really gel with and I turn to him for ideas of new ways of working, a networker – the volunteer I can rely on to tell people we exist. Anyway you get the idea. I ask them to contribute at the meetings if there is anything they feel needs to be addressed – therefore giving a sense of ownership of the project.
Once weekly, and every time we have a success I send around an email to the team updating them on what’s happened that week, I am lucky all my volunteers are really IT friendly, however you could look at a one sheet update every few weeks.
For the new projects, I am putting together (nearly there now – yeah) a volunteer handbook and half day training to cover all about the projects in Martock, volunteering opportunities, safeguarding, boundaries, who to go to for support etc, we felt this would start everyone off with the same training and then they can go off to individual projects for specific role training. Following on from this there will be a volunteer peer support type group on the last Friday of every month. Tea and cake and a chance to talk to other volunteers.
Sorry I have gone on a bit – but hope some of that is helpful.
Good Luck with your projects
TraceyJanuary 15, 2015 at 12:53 pm #9263
Hi Tracey – thanks so much for all of that great advice! We’ve got another question the forum about developing a employment support centre, maybe your work with your Job Club would be relevant and you could get chatting with Sophie.
Just to remind everyone that our next live chat starts right here in a few minutes…January 15, 2015 at 1:03 pm #9265
Welcome to this week’s third and final live chat.
Who’s here? Could you start us off with an intro to yourself and your project, and tell me what big plans you’ve got for your project for 2015?
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