We will develop systems that enable citizens to be equal partners in designing and commissioning public services and in determining the use of public resources.
Enterprise and social economy
We will promote community-based approaches to economic development that focus on supporting the creation of jobs, social enterprises and other businesses and providing an environment for co-operative and mutual enterprises to thrive.
We will embrace innovation in how we work with local communities to drive positive change.
We will capture and ‘expand’ the experience and learning from individual projects and approaches in order to encourage broader application of co-operative principles within individual member Councils and across the Network.
Maximising social value
We will support the development of a framework and criteria for social value, giving substance to the concept and supporting Councils with the tools to ensure better local social and economic outcomes.
New models of meeting priority needs
In exploring new ways of meeting the priority needs of our communities we will encourage models, such as co-operatives and mutuals, which give greater influence and voice to staff and users. in designing and commissioning public services and in determining the use of public resources.
In July 2021, Stevenage Borough Council (SBC), were supported by the Hertfordshire Growth Board and collaborated with Hertfordshire colleagues from all district and borough councils as well as the County Council to convene a working group exploring opportunities to develop a partnership approach to Community Wealth Building (CWB) . This initial activity culminated with SBC submitting a successful bid to the UK Community Renewal Fund on behalf of the working group.
Funding is being used to support local businesses and voluntary, community and social enterprise (VCSE) sector organisations as well as examining both the strategic planning and procurement opportunities across the county in collaboration with key local stakeholders. Each district and borough in Hertfordshire have been provided with funding that they are able to utilise to deliver against the defined outputs and outcomes of the programme. In Stevenage we have been working closely with our Social Inclusion Partnership, one of the thematic groups of our wider Stevenage Together Partnership, to develop a joined-up approach to CWB alongside a core of 16 VCSE organisations. Additionally, We have been working with business support organisations to provide both workshop and one to one provision for organisations to:
- Expand their reach
- Improve their ability to attract further funding
- Develop their business planning
- Look at their sustainability and remove the barriers to entry for VCSE organisations in accessing this kind of business support.
For further information contact:
Co-operative Neighbourhoods Programme Manager
Stevenage Borough Council