The Inspire programme is providing the inspiration for a legacy of opportunities for individuals throughout the West Midlands. We’ve got over 230 projects across our six Inspire themes happening in the West Midlands.
Susan Eaves, Community Games
The Community Games Inspire project is empowering local groups to host their own Games-inspired celebrations. The project has secured additional funding to roll out across the rest of England, which is fantastic news! The project also links in with our Local Leaders campaign to get the nation celebrating the Games this summer.
Susan is one of the project managers who has made most of the Community Games toolkit and she is organising her own celebrations in her community.
How did you find out about the Community Games project and the London 2012 Inspire programme?
I saw Community Games advertised on the London 2012 website and after trying to put on events for the Brickhouse Regis estate in Sandwell for a number of years, through my work with the residents association, I decided to try and put on a Community Games to bring local people together.
What has this project helped you to achieve?
It’s all about social inclusion. The communities on the Brickhouse Regis Estate are quite fragmented and even neighbours don’t even speak to one another. The project got a lot of people out mixing together and playing the games together, especially the young people.
How has this project inspired you?
I want to do another one – bigger and better for 2012. The residents association also used the Games to strengthen ties with other organisations that can help the local community. For example Groundworks have been working with young people on the estate – some of whom have been in trouble with the police in the past – and will be contributing to the Community Games event this year.
Fit and Funky
Project organiser: Community Vibe
Fit and Funky was a six-month outreach community engagement dance project for young people and adults with experience of mental health issues, aimed at tackling the associated stigma. The project also helped to increase confidence and encourage healthier lifestyles among patients.
The project was led by Community Vibe in conjunction with Rosie Kay Dance Company and involved half-day sessions run over 20 weeks in three different venues in Birmingham. Rosie and a team of professional artists worked alongside 220 individuals at different stages in their medical treatment and recovery to develop a new dance performance exploring issues to do with mental health.
The workshops exceeded all expectations and led to the creation of an innovative mental health awareness dance performance, Mind Out, which was showcased at Dance Exchange in Birmingham in July 2010 as part of Open Weekend. Hundreds of people attended the final performance which featured a 10-minute film explaining how the project happened.
Volunteers – We Need You!
Project organiser: Regional Action West Midlands
Volunteers – We Need You! is a public engagement campaign that uses the inspiration and excitement surrounding London 2012 and the interest in Games-times volunteers to encourage people in the West Midlands to become sports volunteers in their own local communities.
Dedicated volunteers across the West Midlands will be the faces of the campaign in their local areas, making the campaign relevant, targeted and engaging. The campaign is supported by an online resource, which provides a volunteering notice board featuring sports volunteering opportunities across the region.
The campaign runs in the majority of leisure centres, libraries and doctors’ surgeries in the region, and has reached 400,000 homes in Staffordshire via the local authority magazine. The website has demonstrated its success by a steady growth in visits since the launch.