Blaenavon Town Council launches ‘Participatory Budget’ fund
Blaenavon Town Council has teamed up with digital communications experts, Vocaleyes, to provide a platform for local residents to decide how money is spent in their own communities in Blaenavon.
This first year’s cycle of participatory budgeting - a process in which local residents decide how to allocate a portion of the initial budget of £30k towards residents’ proposals - will operate from April 2021 to March 2022.
Residents will decide how to spend the budget of up to £5k per idea. Giving communities a say in how money is spent on the things they want to see it spent on is seen as a vital way of working together to make great places to live.
Any current Blaenavon resident over 18 can submit an idea. Young people over the age of 11 are also encouraged to get involved and vote on the projects that are important to them where they live.
By working with Vocaleyes, people can submit their ideas using the digital platform. This will then be whittled down by an independent committee, based on feasibility and cost. Projects will then be made live, and communities are encouraged to rally together and vote for the projects they like most.
Cllr Gareth Davies the Project Lead said: “Participatory budgeting is a vital community-building tool that directly involves putting residents at the heart of making the decisions on what they’d like to see funded most in their community. “Even with the current economic uncertainty, this is a great way for the community to come together virtually and engage at a time when face to face communication is really difficult.”
Blaenavon Town Council continue to adapt to the evolving impact COVID-19 is having on communities by finding different ways to engage with residents. Partnering with Vocaleyes with its built-in functionality - in combination with a working group made up of Officers and Councillors - helps to deliver great impact from locally adopted ideas.
Cllr Alan Jones, Mayor of Blaenavon Town Council, said: “We’re delighted to be working in partnership with Torfaen County Borough Council, Natural Resources Wales, Aneurin Bevan Health Board, Bron Afon Housing & Gwent Police.”
Find out more about how to get involved and vote by visiting: link to go here