Growing Community Spirit

CRC are running a pilot project to help communities in the rural Vale to share their experiences and learn from each other to enable communities to strengthen and rebuild community spirit.


Our goal is to grow community spirit in different villages in the rural Vale and show case best practice.  We want local community and voluntary groups to share and celebrate their community spirit successes, so that others may be inspired to do the same. 


Groups will have an opportunity to receive funding of up to £1000 to support their community to trial new innovative ideas to grow community spirit in your community.


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Community Spirit Network

There has been an excellent response from communities in the rural Vale.  Over 20 different communities have come together to take part in the sharing of learning and experiences from their community and join the Community Spirit Network.  Each community is coming up with new ideas for innovative activities to help build community spirit.


We have had quarterly meetings with a variety of speakers:

  • Ystradowen and Peterston Super Ely representatives sharing their experiences of Community Mapping
  • St Hilary Forum sharing the benefits of the community newsletter.
  • The project co-ordinator of  the Attic Project explained that the project supports older people to organise their personal possessions so that they can live as independently as possible by carrying out adaptations, while sensitively managing removal of unused items, and recording reminiscences and encouraging recycling.
  • The Artistic Director of Afon Dance Company  explained about their work with special needs groups in schools, links to the national curriculum, performing arts workshops for kids in school holidays, and social and fitness element for older participants.
  • Director of Our One Planet Project explained about their work creating wildlife havens.
  • Country Manager for the Eden Project Communities spoke about the Big Lunch, the UK’s annual get together for neighbours.  A Big Lunch can be anything from a small gathering in a garden, park or driveway, to a larger party with trestle tables down the middle of your street. The idea is that by starting simple, all sorts of friendships, ideas and projects can come out of a Big Lunch. 
  • Community Venue Online booking – we  introduced the new 2 year project about piloting on line booking systems  in single venues, cluster venues (neighbouring community areas / villages) and cluster of nearby venues (managed separately).  The project will involve trialling different booking systems and assessing the cost effectiveness of it.


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Innovation Awards

Under the project, there has been an offer of funding of up to £1000 to trial something new in your community.


The following awards have been granted

  • St Hilary Forum has been awarded funding to set up a ‘St Hilary News’, a hardcopy monthly newsletter of news, views and what’s going on in the village.  The newsletters are hand delivered to all residents, which provides continuity of communication and contact with villages to help reduce social isolation particularly with the elderly.
  • The SAINTS have been awarded funding to run the first Health and Wellbeing festival in the Vale.  This will be an opportunity to bring families together to learn more about nutrition / healthy food, sports activities, football and wider fitness.  The event will bring all generations of families together to focus on a healthier lifestyle.
  • Llangan Community Council have been awarded funding to set up a new community website to enable the residents of the three villages of Treoes, Llangan and St Mary Hill to find out what is going on in each of the communities.  All local groups and service providers will be able to showcase what is going on in the villages and thus improve communication in the area.
  • Pendoylan Community Council has been awarded funding to host an ‘Environmental Day’ on Saturday 1st September, to bring the community together to look after their local environment.  The day will involve litter picking, wildflower planting, dog poo campaign, traffic awareness, planting flowerbeds and community dog walk. The group are also organising a jumble trail and picnic / bbq will give people the chance to socialise with each other in a variety of places around the village. 
  • Ewenny Community Council have been awarded funding to set up a local group to explore improving and developing ‘The Meadows Play Area’ in Corntown.  The aim is to bring the community together, and gain community involvement in a project through a series of community mapping / engagement events including the Great Get Together and the Play Day Picnic as well as running a community survey.