This is a very practical session demonstrating how Neighbourhood Agreements can help build strong and active communities at a time of shrinking budgets.
A neighbourhood agreement is a ‘deal’ between ‘stakeholders’ in a defined neighbourhood in which each party makes commitments about how they will help improve the area. Usually this means an agreement between local residents and providers of local services and amenities.
Agreements help to give local residents the opportunity to look at how services work for them, become educated about the services they can expect and also look at the responsibilities within their neighbourhood. They encourage behaviour change and are prefect for targeting issues in a community, raising awareness and developing solutions to issues around crime, environment or social health, to name but a few..
No two agreements are the same and they are tailor made to the estate, street or ward they are developed with.
Agreements provide a tangible way to deal with emerging issues and whether an elected member, an officer or service, or a local resident, they provide a role for all.
What are the benefits?
Some public service managers see neighbourhood agreements as a way to ensure they are meeting local need. Councillors may see them as a way to better understand what service providers are offering to confirm their own assumptions about local needs.
The main benefits of developing neighbourhood agreements include:
- Increases satisfaction of residents with public services and the local area generally
- Enables residents to have more direct influence over local decision-making
- Helps public services be delivered more efficiently, directing resources to where they are needed most and in ways that better meet users needs
- Improves communication and relationships between councillors, service providers and residents directly involved in the agreement
- Helps communities reach agreement among themselves about acceptable standards, behaviour and expectations resulting in behaviour change and considered use of resources.
09.45 What is a Neighbourhood Agreement?
Overview of developing a neighbourhood agreement that is owned and developed by the community who design it. Looking at the areas and services that can benefit from an agreement. What will services need to invest to develop an agreement?
11.30 Consulting the community and using existing data.
Identifying the skills associated with different levels of engagement; setting up a workable action plan; setting up a resident group to run the agreements and monitor the agreement’s success
13.15 Afternoon Session
- How do you know if an agreement is not working? How will you get representative engagement?
- The wrong way to do an agreement
Building on the agreement process
- Street Rep Schemes
- Using Participatory Budgeting to encourage civic responsibility
Who should attend:
- Service leads
- Local Councillors with portfolio for community or service delivery
- Community engagement staff
- Police Services
- Senior housing officers or participation officers working in housing
- Community Safety teams
- Policy officers
About the trainer
Maxine Moar has been involved in building local and national community cohesion polices for over 10 years. She has been consulting communities and using the results to work with partner organisations and elected members throughout that time and her work has been nationally recognised. She has worked with successive Ministers and Home Secretaries as well as with the Department for Communities and Local Government and countless local community initiatives.
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Local Government Information Unit
For 25 years the Local Government Information Unit has provided support to councils and championed local democracy. The LGiU is an independent think-tank and a resource for local government. Our teams of policy analysts are experts in local government. They provide practical policy advice, training, consultancy, public affairs services and other resources to our members and other organisations.