Changing places: stories of innovation & tenacity in five Birmingham neighbourhoods

This report describes how five neighbourhood organisations and networks in Birmingham have found new roles and purpose at a time of public sector austerity and growing social pressures, demonstrating the value and potential of local community-based neighbourhood working.

The report describes the work of neighbourhood organisations and networks in Balsall Heath, Bournville, Castle Vale, Stirchley and Lozells.

In Castle Vale and Balsall Heath we see two of the original Birmingham Guide Neighbourhoods which have brought innovation to service delivery for more than 25 years. In Bournville we see a historic approach that has evolved and sustained itself over several generations. In Stirchely we see how an asset based approach has revitalised grassroots community activity in the area, bringing a fresh and dynamic approach to co-production. The fifth – Lozells – illustrates the effectivness of a network of individuals and agencies who have come together over the last seven years.

Critical to their longevity and resilience - at a time the majority of similar organisations have failed - is that they have profound and durable relationships with their local communities, and that their plans and prospects are often based on leveraging the value of both social and capital assets. Without these assets, or networks of local relationships, their history over the last decade may have been very different.

The report was commissioned by the Pioneer Group.

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