Oct 23 2013

Hall on… Neighbourhood Champions

susan_hall_pinup-150x150I am absolutely delighted to be back at the helm of the Neighbourhood Champions scheme. I launched it back in 2009 because I, like many of you, believe it has the capacity to make Harrow a cleaner, safer and fairer place.

With potentially two thousand residents working closely with the Council, the police and all our partners, I know we can have a really positive impact on our borough.

At the Neighbourhood Champions conference earlier this month – many thanks to the hundreds of you who attended – I set out my plans on how we’re going to make the experience of being a Champion even better. We have found £50,000 to invest in the scheme, and have taken on board a lot of your comments on what you’d like improved.

You told us that it was sometimes difficult to get in touch with the Council, so we’re redesigning the Neighbourhood Champions website and improving our internal processes to get you quicker responses to any issues you report back. We’re making it easier for Champions to talk to each other and share advice by introducing a web forum, and will be issuing you with road-specific e-mail addresses – to help your neighbours get in touch.

We are looking to train an additional 250 Champions by Christmas and, for the first time, will be offering specialised training – to new and existing Champions. This will allow our Champions to build up expertise in areas such as highways, waste collection, crime and park maintenance.

Our Neighbourhood Champions already play a vital role in reporting issues back to us; what we want to create, however, is a true working partnership. It is my hope that these new initiatives, combined with enthusiasm across the board, will allow us to do exactly that.

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