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Better Together - Breightmet

Better Together - Breightmet

July 2019

The joy of community development is bringing people together and watching the magic happen. Bolton at Home work with many partners including Bolton Community Solidarity Association. After a meeting one day, we got to chatting about what brings people together and decided that everyone loved a party, so we applied for funding together to plan an event which could benefit the wider community. I was quite new in my role so contacted the few local groups that I had met and all were keen to get involved. Over a period of three months 10-15 volunteers met to plan the party of the year. Inspired by the success of the Great Get Together the group decided to have activities for all ages, food from around the world and that everything should be free. Luckily our grant from the Lottery Community Fund made that possible as well as generous donations from local businesses and volunteers.

Through the process volunteers developed negotiation and planning skills, learnt to complete risk assessments, developed site plans but the real benefit of having so many voices and aspects of the community represented was that no one was left behind. Conversations about access, mobility, language and fun were had at every meeting until the event. People used their contacts and relationships to get organisations and others on board, flirted in the post office to get our posters displayed and mobilised to distribute thousands of flyers.

Despite the torrential rain the event was really well attended. Over 300 people enjoyed African curry, peas and pasties, bug house making, archery, football, butterfly painting, land kayaking and much more. Individuals became a group, strangers became friends and showed everyone that we are “Better Together, Whatever the Weather!”

A huge thank you to The Videobox, Breightmet Men in Sheds, Bolton Solidarity Association, St James Church, Wave Adventures, Breightmet Butterflies, Bolton NEWT for making this happen and to all the people who joined the party.

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