Friends of Chapel Street ParkA group of residents passionate about their local park, Chapel Street Park in Levenshulme
In September 2020 a group of local residents who live in the vicinity of Chapel Street Park set about establishing the group Friends of Chapel Street Park. The group aims to bring together the local community and find out what people in the area would like to see happen in the park. Alongside buzz Manchester Health & Wellbeing Service, the group was supported by the landlord of The Bluebell Inn and The Bee Sanctuary Movement, a local organisation that focus on cultivating local green spaces to support native flora and fauna.
Benefit of Community based projects
Volunteering in community projects and performing acts of kindness can have a positive impact on mental wellbeing. There is a small amount of evidence to suggest that getting involved in environmental activities and projects may also have a positive impact on physical health. Community engagement can foster a greater sense of ownership and identification with the local area, which may lead to long-term sustainability. It can also combat social exclusion and empower individuals.
The group reached out to the community using a questionnaire which was created with support from buzz Neighbourhood Health Worker Noah. This was distributed to local residents in the area through Facebook and during a consultation, the group got 90 responses using these outlets.
With support from buzz Manchester they also printed 500 questionnaires which were distributed through local residents’ letterboxes, asking for their input and inviting them to the group’s first AGM meeting. buzz helped the group identify the four most common languages spoken by local residents by contacting the local primary school, and had the leaflet translated to enable the group to engage with the community as a whole.
The responses from these questionnaires are helping to shape the initial plans for community projects that will happen in the park, such as setting up a community allotment in a disused bowling green. buzz have paid for the groups’ public liability insurance to help get the community projects in the park started. buzz have also provided the group with funding to purchase gardening tools and equipment. The collaboration between buzz and the group also includes supporting the group to identify, apply for and access additional funding to bring the ideas of the community to life.
buzz Manchester Health & Wellbeing Service
Friends of Chapel Street Park Committee
The Bee Sanctuary Movement
The Bluebell Inn
Chapel Street Park Primary School
Parks Service Manchester City Council
Strategic links to local/national policies
Increased mental wellbeing
More engaged in community
Community ownership and long-term sustainability
Empowerment of individuals
Increased physical activity and physical health
Curry et al (2018) Happy to help? A systematic review and meta-analysis of the effects of performing acts of kindness on the well-being of the actor. Journal of Experimental Social Psychology, 76, pp. 320-329
Husk et al; Cochrane Systematic Review (2016) Participation in environmental enhancement and conservation activities for health and well‐being in adults: a review of quantitative and qualitative evidence
Pillemer et al (2010) Environmental Volunteering and Health Outcomes over a 20-Year Period, The Gerontologist, 50 (5), pp. 594-602
Public Health England (2015) A guide to community-centred approaches for health and wellbeing
Noah Mellor - Neighbourhood Health Worker
Tel. 0161 271 0501
Mob. 07484 546326
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