Could you be a Community Champion?

June 30 2017

A PROJECT has been launched in Fishponds to help combat isolation and boost social and cultural activities.

A PROJECT has been launched in Fishponds to help combat isolation and boost social and cultural activities.

The Community Champions project is a joint initiative between Bristol Ageing Better and The Care Forum covering Greater Fishponds, including Hillfields, Frome Vale and Eastville. 

It involves supporting volunteers to create connections with groups and other local people with the aim of making service and activities more age-friendly.

Over the next two years they will be recruiting, training and supporting volunteers across the area to be Community Champions and Considerate Friends. 

Both roles are aimed at ensuring neighbourhoods across Fishponds are vibrant places with a wide range of social and cultural activities and opportunities for engagement. 

Community Champions will contribute by finding out about all the different local activities and services available in the area, identifying any gaps and developing projects to fill those gaps. 

Considerate Friends will involve volunteers visiting services and activities to give help and advice, helping ensure they do not present any barriers against age. 

Terry Black, Oldbury Court resident, said: “I’m really excited to be supporting this project in Fishponds with The Care Forum because it will give older people an opportunity to get involved in where they live, meet their neighbours and build stronger communities. 

"I live in Oldbury Court where there are a lot of elders but very few community activities going on for them to come to and be part of the neighbourhood. This project has the potential to make a real difference to people's lives.” 

Claire Littlejohn, BAB project officer, said: “The Care Forum is delighted to launch this project. Being based at the Vassall Centre we have been part of the Fishponds community for a long time. We are so pleased to be developing work that we hope will be a lasting benefit for older people and I am looking forward to working with volunteers and local organisations to make that happen.”

The Greater Fishponds Community Champions project will be overseen by a steering group of local people. Local businesses and services also have an important part to play in signposting people to the project, by displaying posters and distributing leaflets. 

If you are interested in any of the volunteer roles, or want to hear more about the project, contact Claire  by email at  ClaireLittlejohn@thecareforum.org.uk or telephone 0117 958 9325.