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DTAS Conference, Monday 2nd September 2013 Growing Community Assets Evaluation.

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Presentation on theme: "DTAS Conference, Monday 2nd September 2013 Growing Community Assets Evaluation."— Presentation transcript:

1 DTAS Conference, Monday 2nd September 2013 Growing Community Assets Evaluation

2 Background What was supported GCA 1 (2006 - 2010) Progress against five objectives  Stronger communities  New/better services  Skills and confidence  Enterprise/self reliance  Environment Project feedback Wider thoughts/issues 1

3 Background Evaluation has involved:  Case studies (10 each year)  Household survey with community (12 projects)  User surveys (449 users at 15 projects)  Project manager interviews GCA 1 (2006 - 2010) supported:  209 applications received, 127 awards were made to 114 community groups and 84 projects up and running  More than half of the projects were in areas ranked in the bottom half of areas using the Scottish Index of Multiple Deprivation (SIMD)  In all but 5 local authorities 2

4 3

5 GCA 1 project profile 4 Urban Small towns and accessible rural Remote ruralTotal% by type Community facilities1321205443% Community social enterprise14382520% Energy14121713% Environment325108% Tourism0110119% Land00332% Withdrawn41276% Total353260127100% % by geography28%25%47%100%

6 5 Communities are stronger, with shared aspirations and the ability to achieve these together Communities have services and amenities that meet people’s needs better and are more accessible  Typically 50% to 60% of regular users in their projects consider it to have made a “big difference” to their own lives, while 70% to 80% consider it to have made a “big difference” to the community.  People who visit or are involved with GCA projects rate their area and community more highly as a place to live  They also know more people and they feel they have more influence over local decisions.  Around 36,000 people now using GCA-funded services and facilities in their own communities on a regular basis  Among those that were aware of the projects 74% considered the project had provided services and amenities that meet people’s needs better Objectives and progress

7 6 People have more skills, knowledge and confidence…. Communities are more able to grasp opportunities, and are more enterprising and self-reliant Communities have a more positive impact on the local and global environment  Mainly from development/management of projects and social links rather than through more formal training or skills  700 people in project management  Across 84 projects, 1,700 regular volunteers.  337 full-time jobs and 301 part-time jobs related to projects  140 businesses have been accommodated - 15 new ones started  Majority of projects aim to become financially self-sustaining - 26% have achieved this to date.  Rental income most significant source of revenue  New-build projects typically incorporate ways of maximising energy efficiency (e.g. solar panels).  The 18 GCA supported energy projects are currently operating or anticipate connecting to the grid in the next 12 months will bring 9.8 MW of renewable capacity

8 Additionality of support 7

9 Impact of projects 8

10 Project feedback Research, scope and planning of the project  agree the scope early on, carry out research with the community, clarify plans Experience of the project manager and Directors  full-time project manager and management team in place from the start, set up a sub-groups, use previous business experience for the board – be selective Use of external advice  get training and experience to understand consultants, especially architects Learning from peers  go and visit similar projects to see what they are doing and learn from these. Time  Prepare for a long run - not a sprint, but a marathon, don't be too optimistic about what can be achieved in a short time with volunteers Community engagement and communication  Generate sense of community ownership, events and celebrations. Get people involved as much as possible from the start rather than just consulting them. Where possible make sure there are short term tangible indicators of progress 9

11 Wider issues Community ownership  People like the concept of community ownership - 92% of those using facilities thought it was a “good thing”. While 11% were willing to volunteer time or take decisions  Most (68%) of project leaders were more positive about community ownership than when they started  Although community engagement is an issue for some, the overall view of project leaders is that demand had met expectations (60%) or exceeded them (30%) Urban and rural  On the surface, the remote and rural projects appear to have a greater chance of success. Urban projects have the potential to impact on more people (but also require more support). 10

12 More issues Sustainable  The evaluation has been over a very weak economic period, which has affected income. There are examples where business plans have been too optimistic (important for GCA 2)  Income is central to empowerment, but it also attracts participation and raises status with partners. Could more be done to grow assets and develop innovative ways of generating income? Monitoring  Monitoring and consultation remains important in ensuring that projects respond and adapt (not always right first time) - this can get forgotten  Could more be done to understand the profile of users (and non-users) and understand whether objectives are being met?  Where people engage with projects we know there are real benefits. The next stage is then to grow participation 11

13 Putting it together 12

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