Community empowerment, engagement and involvement
The Sunderland Neighbourhood Investment Plans were written in consultation with residents and partners from across the city. The plans were developed to demonstrate a commitment to real change and investment within our neighbourhoods, across all partnerships to create solutions, alongside residents which will improve the local area. Each of the plans has been allocated funding to support delivery, alongside Area Committee Neighbourhood Funding.
During 2019 we launched our resident engagement strategy - Let's Talk Sunderland - we asked residents what they liked about their neighbourhood, what they'd like to change and how they could become more involved within their community. We received an excellent response from residents of all ages and communities. Clearly the residents of Sunderland love their neighbourhoods and their city - however they feel it could be better cared for, with more enforcement against those who don't care about the city. They value the strong community spirit and they want to support vulnerable communities, including improving ﬁnancial wellbeing. Signiﬁcant investment is ongoing across Sunderland creating an exciting and vibrant, healthy and dynamic city for everyone - we must however bring back the vibrancy of our neighbourhoods too, ensuring all residents share the journey.
Sunderland Council also continues to:
- Promote and grow volunteering opportunities through the volunteer platform
- Promote and support community projects through Crowdfund Sunderland - over £411k raised so far
- Seek opportunities and external funding to respond to 'left-behind' communities - working in partnership with the Northeast Funding Network to continue to support and develop the five Area Voluntary and Community Sector (VCS) Networks
- Increase capacity within the city to support the VCS through the co-creation of a VCS alliance and implementation of targeted and dedicated additional community development support across the five geographical areas in the city, in partnership with Sunderland Clinical Commission Group and Gentoo
- Encourage active resident participation in local decision-making - online Council meetings and wider resident consultation and involvement through Let's Talk Sunderland
The following milestones have been successfully met since 2019:
- Crowdfund Sunderland launched in early 2020 and to-date x projects supported with over £xxx raised to support communities across the city
- 100,000 residents consulted through Let's Talk Sunderland to inform the Neighbourhood Investment Plans Neighbourhood Investment Plans
- Volunteer platform launched and over 1,500 residents actively volunteering in Sunderland