The Forum’s work is divided into to four key areas:
1) Neighbourhood Regeneration and Strategy
We help carry out consultation work with key partners on any new Neighbourhood Regeneration and Strategy projects for the Parson Cross community. Including any significant aspects of our community’s physical characteristics and the scope for changes and improvements. Feasibility and Financial appraisals of development plans are carried out and and we work with key partners to ensure that any new developments fit into the overall Masterplan, such as the potential new GP Hubs proposed for 2023.
2) Supporting Groups
The Forum gives support to new and existing local organisations and community groups that provide a service to local people. We have a portfolio of services at competitive rates that we can offer to groups and individuals, i.e administration, bookkeeping, payroll and account verification. We are not an advice centre, but our staff can certainly direct people to where they can access the help they need.
All our work requires the support of our members and the organisations they represent. Much of the day to day activity is carried out by a small team of workers who are led and steered by the volunteer board of directors.
3) Activities, Training and Events
The Forum provided a wide variety of activities, training and events for the community.
We provide opportunities for the community to become healthier and more active by delivering a wide range of classes aimed at changing their lifestyle including Young at Heart, Tai Chi, 2 Lunch Clubs, Singing for the Soul and our Batters Group (table tennis).
We deliver training courses for individuals who are looking for employment including IT, First Aid, Moving and Handling, Food Safety, Literacy and Numeracy as well as Confidence and Motivation building courses.
Over the past few years Parson Cross Forum have developed groups aimed at supporting people with Dementia/Alzheimer’s and now run 5 weekly activities and most of our other groups are also dementia friendly. We have secured funding from the National Lottery Reaching Community Fund and also recently been awarded a 5 year continuation contract by the NHS Clinical Commissioning group – People Keeping Well in their Community and SOAR, to deliver 3 weekly Memory Cafe’s. The cafes are aimed at people with early onset Dementia/Alzheimer’s and their carers. We also deliver our well established JABADAO group through our National Lottery Funding, which is aimed at people with mid to late stage Dementia/Alzheimer’s and their carers.
Throughout the year the Forum also organises a number of events including tea dances, drag shows, pantomime’s even day trips and short holidays. Check out our events page to find out what’s coming soon.
4) Rooms for Hire
We have great rooms for hire, starting from just £8.00 per hour and we can offer catering for meetings and events. Give us a call for prices and to out more.
Sorry no parties.
HOW WE DO IT
The Forum is the middle contact between any new or existing developments in the area. We work in partnership with local residents and contractors to ensure any issues are dealt efficiently and effectively.
St Thomas More Centre: We manage the lease to the St Thomas More Community Centre. It is our aim to maximise usage of the centre, to build the capacity of local community groups and generate more income that can be put into improving the centre. We are currently active in pursuing more funding to ensure that the building is always fit for purpose.
Redevelopment Sites: We work with partner organisations and statutory services to ensure the community has a voice and is involved in regeneration opportunities and redevelopment sites, i.e.
- GP Hubs
- Brownfield Sites
- Gleeson Homes
Community Events: We organise several community events within our community centre including Dementia Friendly Afternoon Tea Parties and an annual Christmas Pantomime. We also organise coach day trips out to the sea side, a Christmas Markets and event to the Horse Races on occasions.
We also apply to funding bodies for smaller pots of money which enable us to intervene in specific areas of need within the community, such as directly delivering activities and educational courses for different age groups to enhance people’s health, wellbeing and skills levels.
WHAT WE DON’T DO
We rarely say “no” to any request, but there are limits to our capacity to meet demand, whether due to lack of funding or lack of expertise. However, we are in a position to point people to relevant provider organisations, many of which will be members of the Forum. We have access to a wide range of services across the region.
We try not to step on other people’s toes. The Forum’s clear role is to help other organisations to do their job better rather than to take over. If no relevant organisation or other source of help exists, then we try to set up new groups or ask that existing services extend their range of assistance to fill the gaps.
We do not provide funding to individuals directly. The Forum’s funds are for the benefit of the public at large and there are legal and ethical restrictions on how that money is used. We can help groups and organisations with funding searches and the writing of bids and we can pay for certain training activities and expenses for volunteers.
We do not restrict our services and activities to any particular age, gender, race or creed. We promote an inclusive and diverse community where everyone is valued and all have the opportunity to participate. Neither do we discriminate on grounds of physical or mental ability. Instead we encourage people to explore their potential and extend their personal boundaries.
We work with the council and the private sector to ensure that there are suitable, affordable and decent homes available for everyone. We campaign for investment in existing properties to ensure they meet acceptable standards.
We also campaign for investment in new properties, ensuring that those people who want to stay in our community have a range of opportunities to tenure and price.
We don’t promise what we can’t deliver. We are often just as frustrated with official delay and bureaucratic red tape as anyone else.