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Causeway Coast and Glens – Big Dish Out for Cushendall and Cross Glebe, Coleraine

Causeway Coast and Glens – Big Dish Out for Cushendall and Cross Glebe, Coleraine

Thu, April 12, 2018

Causeway Coast and Glens is leading the way with a unique pilot project giving communities more power over spending in their local neighbourhoods.

Two areas of the Borough are participating in this exciting approach to local people deciding how money is spent on local projects and services. The communities of Cushendall in the Glens and Cross Glebe in Coleraine have been busy generating project ideas to benefit their local communities and will vote to decide which projects should get the money at two community events later this month. As this project has been open to all from 10 years old and up, there have been a number of projects submitted by young people.

The twist is that local people themselves will decide which projects will receive funds to proceed. The local communities from Cushendall and Cross Glebe have been invited along to vote for the projects they would most like to see happen in their area.

Cross Glebe will be the first to host their ‘Big Dish Out’ event on the evening of Thursday 19th April starting off at 7.00pm and taking place in Harpur’s Hill Primary School. One week later, Cushendall community will host their event in the local Sailing and Boating Club at 7.00pm on Thursday 26th April.

If you live in either of these areas and want a say in how these funds are spent you will be very welcome.

Offering her support for the initiative, the Mayor of Causeway Coast and Glens Borough Council Councillor Joan Baird OBE said: “I am delighted to see this pilot project taking place in the Causeway Coast and Glens which puts community members at the very heart of the decision-making processes which affect them. People living in Cushendall and Cross Glebe have really got behind the idea and it is fantastic to see this kind of engagement taking place. We received a diverse range of projects and ideas for consideration, including some submitted by our young people and I would like to commend everyone who has been involved for their enthusiasm so far.”

Karin Eyben, Project Coordinator of the Waste No Time Team, overseeing the project, says ‘I am really looking forward to The Big Dish Out events. Both will be unique to their own communities, with one community taking a ‘market-place’ approach, setting out their proposals at stalls, and the other pitching their bids through short presentations. They promise to be lively, fun and exciting – a great opportunity for local people of all ages to decide for themselves how money invested in their local communities is spent. Who better to decide, than local residents who know the needs of their community because they live there?’

This innovative approach to local community funding originated in Brazil in the 1980s and is known globally as Participatory Budgeting.  It focuses on community engagement and supporting those that may normally be excluded from traditional and more bureaucratic means of accessing financial support, whilst enabling local people to decide on issues that matter to them. Causeway Coast and Glens Borough Council is the first Council in Northern Ireland to try out Participatory Budgeting in a local neighbourhood setting.

The Waste no Time Team is a partnership project supported by the Building Change Trust and delivered locally by Beyond Skin, Building Communities Resource Centre, Causeway Coast and Glens Borough Council, Charo Lanao-Madden, Compass Advocacy Network, Corrymeela, Jez Hall, Rural Community Network & Triangle Housing Association - a range of organisations and individuals committing time and resources to test out the value of creative citizen engagement. They have been using different and exciting approaches that generate curiosity and energy to encourage citizen participation and to inform the ambition of Community Planning in Causeway Coast and Glens.

Full details of the events and pilot project are available at www.wastenotime.net or Facebook Waste No Time.

Contact Causeway Coast and Glens Borough Council Community Planning Team –

communityplanning@causewaycoastandglens.gov.uk or tel 028 276 60209.