We are a thinking organisation, working with partners to review traditional models of planning, delivery and evaluation:
- Co-produced, Inclusive Evaluation Methodology with the Countryside Community Research Institute;
- A Peer-to-Peer user-led Mentor Support Training programme with our Access Bike project,and
- A community-led place-based application, the first of its kind for the National Heritage Lottery,successfully implementedfor the Cotswold Canals Connect project.
Over the last year we developed a strategy for Stroud District to support local volunteer action and make our communities more resilient, safe, and inclusive in the face of any emergency.
Our team embraces creative approaches, seeing opportunities for innovation rather than problems. We are willing to take risks to create change and are comfortable with doing things differently.
In the last two years of rapid growth our funding model moved away from majority short term grants to larger and long-term grants, Local Authority and health service with a 2-3 year secure funding stream for all current work.
We are building our reserveswith a policy to keep them to a minimum to cover core operational costs for just three months, because we only operate solvent projects, each with a discrete budget. This means we maximise outcomes for communities and can adapt to any situation arising.
We forecast a year ahead to support planning and sustainability of projects and organisation, currently showing turnover of 500K+ for 2021.
We actively choose to work in direct partnership with local people and organisations, maximising potential by sharing resources, networks, skills,and ideas and collaborating on common challenges. We love to share what we know, our resources and discoveries with other organisations and make that part of our planning process.
In 2019 we became a partner in the Cotswold Canals Connected project, and in 2020 we set up anew Community Interest Companyin partnership with the Grace Network.
In 2021 we will be working in partnership with Stroud District Counciland Gloucestershire County Councilto deliver our Area Hubs Strategy, a transformative project and model for community partnership working.
In 2021 we will begrowing our team to absorb several new projects, the wonderful work we will be doing with our canal community, supporting the Gloucestershire Youth Climate Action Panel, on the Area Hubs Strategy and running our exciting 3rdSpace hub with community kitchen, high spec IT suite, music, and creative spaces.