Staffordshire County Councillors received £2500 as part of the People Helping People fund in 2019/2020 to award to community projects in their Divisions. I like to keep people up to date about the fantastic projects I have supported this year and so I have provided a list below. The fund is now closed and I hope the County Council intends to keep this fund going so that more brilliant projects can be supported in 2020/21.
Go Kidsgrove – Making Christmas Fun:
Making Christmas Fun’ will use shared Christmas craft activities to bring families together in a stress-free environment. We will run workshops in the libraries and pop-up shop to enable families to work together to make Christmas lanterns and decorate tree baubles. The lanterns will be used in the ‘DIY light parade’ on the day of the Switch-on event, which also brings families together in a fun activity. The baubles will be used to decorate the tree in the centre of town, creating a shared ownership of Christmas in Kidsgrove. We also wish to purchase a good quality pop-up gazebo so we can take the workshops to other locations, without the need for finding suitable premises.
Ian Atherton – Butt Lane Youth Club
A weekly youth club for 9 to 14 year olds to encourage young people’s personal and social development by getting involved in positive activities and having fun. The youth club will help to tackle anti-social behaviour and will be based at Butt Lane Baptist Church.
Crown Bank Allotment Association – Access For All:
The object of improving access (Access For All) to the Allotment gardens is to allow the surrounding community to be able to access the Allotment gardens safely, and in return we be able to open the site up to the local schools and care homes in Talke Pits/Kidsgrove district.
Kidsgrove Sports Centre Community Group – Kidsgrove Sports Centre Sports 4 all:
To provide Sports Opportunities to our local and surrounding communities. Kidsgrove Sports Centre was closed to the public in June 2017. Since the time of closure, the community has campaigned tirelessly for its re-opening. This grant would help to provide much needed equipment for the centre that was sadly removed from site and would again allow users the opportunity to reach their full potential, promote sport and fitness and encourage lifestyle changes.
Red Street Community Centre – Community Project:
Red Street Community Centre is used by the whole community and facilities are enjoyed by all. We have various groups that use the centre including karate, Parkinson’s group, slimming world, drama group , dog training and also Kidsgrove Care Solutions. Some of these groups mainly Kidsgrove Care Solutions and Parkinson’s group have special needs clientele and because of this they require specialised equipment that needs to be stored. We are looking to acquire some sheds that will allow groups to store this equipment in and release much needed space in main hall where equipment is kept now.
Total awarded to community projects – £2479.00
This week I attended the Labour Party Annual Conference and spoke about engaging local people in democracy and delivering services, and how I have worked with local young people in Kidsgrove to set up a Youth Parliament
I told conference:
“The Tories decimated our Youth Services in Staffordshire despite 16,000 people signing a petition opposing the cuts. Young people are feeling more vulnerable than ever in these difficult times, they rely on these key support services.”
“In the face of these cold and calculating cuts, young people are responding in the most positive and extraordinary ways. Setting up their own Youth Parliament within the Town of Kidsgrove, they are now delivering Youth Services with support of the Labour Town Council. With a budget of £2000 a year, the Youth Parliament has helped clean up their community by installing flower beds, donating benches to the local war memorial, setting up knitting with ‘nanas groups’ and organising youth advice days in the absence of formal Youth Services.”
“Young people are choosing to use their own funds to support everyone, in particular the elderly. Their hard work and direct involvement in the community has helped break down barriers and created a more caring atmosphere that all have benefitted from.”
I talked about how inspiring it is to see young people engaging in locally based work and getting involved where previously they were ignored.
I reinforced to the Conference audience the importance of the Labour Party policy pledge to give votes to sixteen year olds in all elections, telling them that this would help to determine that young people and their concerns won’t be ignored by politicians and the decision makers.
Education on local government and politics needs to improve. Far too often young people are leaving school not knowing a single thing about their right to vote and how to have their say on local and national issues. This needs to change if we want to rid ourselves of apathy that does our communities no favours.
I want to remind you that today is polling day and I am the Butt Lane and Clough Hall candidate. I need you to spare some time out of your day to go out and vote for me. Over the last 4 years I have stood up for the people of Butt Lane, Talke, Clough Hall and Kidsgrove. I have fought on the issues that matter most to local people. I have cared about my community and worked hard for you. I want to carry on serving you and I want to continue to make a difference. Please get your family and friends out, speak to your neighbours and spread the word. Every single vote will count as this election could be a close call. Polls are open 7am-10pm all day and you dont need your polling card to vote. If you need a lift to the polling station, call 07837905443. Thank you for everything and all of your support.