New Wortley Community Association has gained a slice of a £262k citywide kitty to help empower local people to improve their community.
The association, based at New Wortley Community Centre, is one of five new ‘pathfinder’ sites across the city receiving grants and has been awarded £37,500 to work with the New Wortley and Armley community, with an option to extend for a year for an extra £25,000.
The project is based around what’s called ‘asset-based community development‘ (ABCD) and is an approach to sustainable community-driven development, supporting local people to make the changes they want to see in their neighbourhood. It’s developed on the premise that everyone has assets and strengths to contribute to their community.
Pathfinder sites work within their local community to uncover and develop existing strengths and assets of individuals and groups, helping to build social connections and fostering citizen led action.
In 2021 Leeds Beckett University published the findings of an 18-month research study into the ABCD model in Leeds. The evaluation found evidence that individuals were better connected, friendships were made, and supportive relationships were formed during this period across ABCD sites.
Cllr Fiona Venner (Kirkstall), executive member for adults and children social care and health partnerships, said:
“ABCD has been pioneered in Leeds and has been a real success story of how the council has supported communities to create the change they want to see. It is fantastic that we can roll out the programme to a further diverse selection of communities across the city.
“I look forward to seeing the impact that these new ABCD pathfinder grants will have on empowering communities.”
The successful third sector organisations awarded the ABCD community grants are Halton Moor and Osmondthorpe Project for Elders (HOPE), InterACT, Slung Low, New Wortley Community Association and Give a Gift.