Participatory City: neighbourhoods made by everyone, for everyone

We are very much looking forward to follow the evolution of the inspiring Every One Everyday initiative, launching in Barking and Dagenham this month. Participatory City is collaborating with the local council, residents and organisations to create a high level of new activity in the borough. The project aims to empower residents to share and engage with each other and thereby make practical participation a key building block for improving the everyday life of residents throughout the borough.

Here's the lowdown:

Neighbourhoods made by everyone, for everyone – that is the aim of a new multi-million pound initiative set to launch in Barking and Dagenham later this year.

Every One Every Day, formed out of a partnership between Participatory City and Barking and Dagenham Council, will be the largest participatory project of its kind in the country.

The ambitious scheme will work with 25,000 residents across the borough to create over 250 neighbourhood-led projects and form more than 100 new businesses over the next five years.

As part of the initiative, residents will be invited to share ideas for projects and community businesses they would like to create in their neighbourhoods. 

The scheme will build on the various community activity already taking place in the borough, and introduce projects such as knowledge sharing, creating dedicated spaces and resources for families to work and play together, and providing facilities for bulk cooking, food growing or tree planting. 

Councillor Saima Ashraf, Deputy Leader and Cabinet Member for Community Leadership and Engagement, said the scheme offered fantastic opportunities for the borough.

Cllr Ashraf said: “A project on this scale has never been done before and I think that is a truly exciting prospect for the people of Barking and Dagenham.  

“Residents told us they wanted a more integrated, cohesive community with a renewed sense of community spirit. This ground-breaking initiative will offer people the chance to shape where they live by participating in projects happening in and around their neighbourhood.”

Participatory City has been refining the model over several years, with the support of Lankelly Chase, and will launch the five-year initiative with two neighbourhood venues - one in Barking and one in Dagenham - for residents to visit.

Tessy Britton, Chief Executive of Participatory City, said: “We are thrilled to be embarking on this exciting initiative with the people of Barking and Dagenham to develop new ways to collaborate.

“By combining all our ideas and resources, we know we can create optimism, well-being and prosperity, and at significant scale.

“This borough couldn’t be a more perfect place to bring this initiative – it has always been a place full of creativity and energy and this initiative will help to grow that even more.”

The £6.4million project has received the backing of The Big Lottery Fund, Esmeė Fairbairn Foundation, City Bridge Trust, and Barking and Dagenham Council.

Watch a 4 minute introduction video about the project below:

Read more here and follow the project on twitter

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