Let's get real!
Funding bids successful! | The plan | Keep in touch
We’ve done it, we’ve managed to attract enough funding to develop the idea of a Community Hub and co-working space on Bearwood’s high street!
Thanks to our funders SCVO and the National Lottery Community Fund, we can crack on with exploring the potential, collaborating locally, and business planning. If you’ve been with us since last summer’s pilot, thank you for your patience! If you’re new to this whole idea, welcome!
What’s the plan?
Over the course of one year we’ll involve as many people as we can in designing and planning what the hub could be and what it would deliver. We want to get to the stage where we have:
a clear business plan that we’ve developed together as a community
a location and an architectural vision if remodelling is required
a strong team of supporters/leaders
funding/investment applications ready to be submitted.
We want to involve as many people in Bearwood and surrounding areas as possible to build the vision together.
In response to people’s ideas at the Build, Make & Mend day and the co-working and creche pilot last year, we’ll be creating opportunities for local people to come together to build on those ideas and imagine . There will be creative and collaborative activities for anybody to join, and we’ll be asking for help to be as inclusive as we possibly can to ensure we’re involving different groups of people, bringing people together:
We’d like to give young people the opportunity to come together and be supported to let their ideas fly.
We’d like to continue ideas developed with the #RadicalChildcare movement about how to make Bearwood the best possible place to bring up children.
We want to talk to the people who are living on our streets about how we could be a more understanding and supportive community.
We Are Bearwood’s community survey highlighted that there are men in our neighbourhood who find it hard to make friends or get involved in something other than work - if you’re one of them, we hope you’ll join us on this journey to develop more good stuff with more people, including you.
And we know from online discussions and partnership with existing community groups that newly arrived families and new parents can struggle with isolation.
This will be a process of open co-creation: creating a vision, creating connections, building a community hub. Together. Whoever you are and however you connect with Bearwood and its surrounding areas. Please join us.
And then, dependent on what vision emerges and the support of funders, we make the vision happen.
A reminder of the original ideas for a community hub:
Here’s the Beartopia we imagined last year, which we tested a little bit when we did a pilot co-working space with creche and our Build, Make & Mend community day. And here’s what we think a co-working space is.
So finally, imagine…
An open, welcoming, collaborative space on the high street where anyone, whatever their age, can walk in, feel welcome and use the space to work, meet, create or play. They can find out what’s going on around Bearwood from our community calendar, they can get a cup of tea and have a natter, they can connect with others to get the community project going they’ve always dreamed about. It’s central, on Bearwood Road, and perhaps they just happened upon it when popping out for some groceries.
Imagine a space that stands in the centre of our busy community and shares what other community organisations and spaces are doing, to further connect people and activities. A place where people can work, get to know others, find out how to volunteer locally, and contribute to Bearwood as a place that makes a positive difference in life: a fantastic place to live, work and play.
Please sign up here to be on our mailing list to receive updates or help out.
The Bearwood.cc team (so far!):
Sally Taylor - Project Manager & Board Member
Jo Capper - Board Member
Julie McKirdy - Board Member
Nicola McAteer - Board Member
Amy Martin - Board Member
Thank you to the National Lottery Community Fund
Reaching Communities Programme
And thank you to Sandwell Council of Voluntary Organisations