Who are we?
Founded 10 years ago, Cornwall Neighbourhoods for Change evolved from a direct response to the needs of residents from estates in West Cornwall. CN4C were aware of a need to involve residents in the regeneration of their neighbourhood, which could in turn form part of the economic improvement of Cornwall. They also wanted to ensure that areas of social housing were included in the development of a strategic response for tackling inequality and persistent poverty; poverty which residents were living in day in, day out and from generation to generation.
So with the help of many partners, CN4C was incorporated, with those involved unaware of what it could achieve and how many lives it would help to change.
CN4C works with communities to achieve the change that they want to see. We work in many different areas, on many different themes. These range from play days and creating community gardens, to ‘good practice’ trips to Cumbria to see what others have done. We also support the community to learn the broadcasting skills they need to report on community activities in Cornwall.
So far we’ve helped more than 2,000 people into employment and a further 2,500 to gain a qualification. We have also worked with 106 residents groups on community development projects. Over the last 10 years we have employed more than 250 people, over half of whom have come from our target client groups of long term unemployed or active volunteers on estates.
In January 2011 we relocated to the Elms, a brand new community resource situated in the old Labour Exchange on Green Lane, Redruth. We are very proud of The Elms and hope that it will become a model for investment in some of Cornwall’s other disadvantaged neighbourhoods. We firmly believe that a genuine way to help people is to provide high quality and accessible services right in the heart of the community by helping people to break free from the bonds of poverty and empowering them to ‘do it for themselves’.
Our Strategy and Influence:
We work at a strategic level to raise awareness of issues facing residents of social housing. Our target neighbourhoods are caught in a spiral of disadvantage; individuals will move out of social housing as and when they can, but the needs-based system of allocation and housing shortage means that vacant properties are occupied by those suffering the greatest disadvantage.
We work with policy makers and service providers to ensure that in accordance with national policy on social inclusion and neighbourhood renewal, resources in Cornwall are targeted to those communities most in need. We work with residents and service providers to build bridges and ensure that coherent and co-ordinated neighbourhood improvement plans are implemented.
Our key partners are:
● Cornwall Council
Our services are based on intensive and customised personal support and guidance. We can provide access to a back to work fund and also host an innovative and varied programme of community based training events. From literacy and numeracy to assertiveness, gardening or cooking. These even extend to degree level courses in power, democracy and Governance.