Drumchapel Thriving Places
Drumchapel is situated in the west of Glasgow, it borders Bearsden to the east and Clydebank to the west and is also bordered by Knightswood and Yoker. The boundaries are shown on the full locality plan.
Thriving Places was introduced in Drumchapel in 2016 to help improve the quality of life of people who live and work here. This can mean trying to improve health and wellbeing, community safety, education, employment, income, housing, the local environment or access to services. It can also mean encouraging local involvement in decision making processes.
During lockdown, the Drumchapel Thriving Places team accessed funding from the Scottish Government Communities Fund and the Recovery Fund to support families with additional needs and small businesses. 123 families were supported and small business such as window cleaners and hairdressers, as well as people on zero-hour contracts. To deliver this activity, the Drumchapel Thriving Place team engaged with all four community-based housing associations, Glasgow Housing Association and the statutory, Third Sector and community-based organisations who meet at the Breakfast & a Blether network. Moreover, several community-based organisations had their funding reduced and through accessing the Recovery Fund, Thriving Places channelled some funding to support these organisations at this difficult time.
The team also supported the Drumchapel Asian Forum to access funding for food distribution to asylum seekers and refugees in the North West of Glasgow.
The links established with these organisations during the four years of Thriving Places in Drumchapel was fundamental for the success of this initiative.
Two editions of Drumchapel News in 2020/2021, with contributions from different groups in Drumchapel, and sent out to all 7696 households in the G15 postcode and uploaded onto nine Facebook pages related to Drumchapel. The Drumchapel News is a link for many people who do not access online platforms, to know what is happening in the community.
The Drumchapel team accessed a small funding package from Glasgow Life to support local people with devices for digital inclusion. In this case 11 devices were distributed to families in Drumchapel, several of whom are asylum seekers. This helped them maintain contact with their families in their countries of origin.
Thriving Places worked in partnership with the G15 Youth Project to deliver "Halloween in the Hoose" which distributed 135 food parcels to families, at their door, during Halloween, supported by funding from the Aspiring Communities Fund. Again, in partnership with G15 Youth Project, Christmas parcels were distributed to the same number of families over the Christmas period.
Thriving Places has worked closely with the Drumchapel Community Council to produce a participatory action model and recruited 22 volunteers ready to engage with the community once restrictions are eased. This model will help push forward locality planning in the neighbourhood.
The pandemic created challenging circumstances for engaging communities in locality planning. For example, the community hub within the Chest, Heart and Stroke Scotland shop within the Drumchapel Shopping Centre was closed for a prolonged period of time due to Covid-19 restrictions. However, a shift to Zoom and Teams meetings has maintained regular meetings with community-based organisations and groups, with a strong focus on helping to strengthen emergency support available to local communities during incredibly difficult times.
Drumchapel Thriving Place was successful in getting funding from Scottish Government to build a small team of three connectors to work with the community connector at Cernach Housing Association. The team is currently made up of Ted Scanlon, Tracy McKenzie, Charles Bailey and Morven Clark, working out of the Chest, Heart and Stroke Scotland (CHSS) shop front in the Drumchapel Shopping Centre.
Over 2019/20 local people were informed about events, activities and the organisations working in Drumchapel through the three issues of Drumchapel News, delivered to every one of the 7,436 households. The Thriving Places Facebook page and the shop front provided information about events and activities in the community. The Thriving Places team gave updates at every Breakfast and Blether session which brought together most organisations working in Drumchapel. These sessions took place every two months in Drumchapel Community Centre and the Phoenix Centre.
Local residents who attended the drop-in at the shop unit were signposted to a range of local organisations and services, such as the Community Council, Drumchapel Foodbank, Drumhub, Drumchapel Money Advice Centre, Drumchapel Foodbank, NHS Community Link workers, Friendship House, G15 Youth Project, 3D for Families and Children, the five primary schools and the High School, the five community-owned housing associations, Glasgow Housing Association and local councillors. Around 40 people dropped in at the shop unit per week.
The Thriving Places team worked taking forward the priorities in the Community Connecting Plan, which had been produced in 2018/19 and was based on initial research carried out in 2017/18. For example, the team ran three outings to address the key priority of tackling social isolation. Another priority, to attract physical development to Drumchapel, was pushed forwards through two community gatherings attended by local people and organisations. Several partners were involved in trying to push forward local priorities in the Community Connecting Plan. These included CHSS, Cernach Housing Association, Drumchapel Community Council and Drumchapel Asian Forum.
Thriving Places supported several community organisations through the community budgeting process. During this year 2019-20 the amount available was less than the previous two years, but still gained the interest and support of several community organisations. In total, £5,000 from Glasgow Health and Social Care Partnership was awarded to 18 community organisations in the local area. For example, the Drumchapel Asian Forum was funded to organise cultural events such as Eid and bring people from different backgrounds together. We Step Together were also funded to deliver literacy work aimed at pupils with additional support needs.
Shortly after the commencement of the Thriving Places approach in Drumchapel, the Community Connector sought to form a 'lead group' of agencies working in Drumchapel, to advise and steer the approach of the strategy. The support of the lead group has been integral to shaping the approach using local knowledge of the area and of what has worked well and not so well in the past. We have taken a great deal from the expertise of people who have lived and/or worked in Drumchapel for many years. After a series of meetings, the lead group agreed that the best way to inform the future of Drumchapel was to speak to as many of the people who live here as possible, and ask them about their experiences of living in Drumchapel. With support from stage 1 of the Aspiring Communities fund in 2018, we finalised the report Living in Drumchapel, which outlined the perspectives put forward in interviews with almost 300 Drumchapel residents. From the findings of this report, we developed a Community Connecting Plan for Drumchapel; a series of activities that can address the things that local people told us were important to them. These included tackling social isolation, the quality of local amenities such as Drumchapel Shopping Centre, community safety, and providing opportunities for learning and connecting with other members of the community, welcoming newcomers, and enabling local people to take a greater role in the decisions affecting them and the place they live.
We presented our report findings widely across the community and asked local colleagues in the G15 youth project to help us produce a short film which presents the report visually with an audio commentary. As well as visiting local parents' group, we also organised a community consultation day where we fed back the results of the community consultation and asked members of the community to comment further and make suggestions about how the issues could be addressed. A key issue to emerge from the research with local people was the fact that people are uncertain about the ownership and future plans for the large areas of vacant land around Drumchapel, and to address this we have worked with our Drumchapel Community Council colleagues to host the first of a series of Q and A sessions with local partners in Glasgow City Council to ensure that future plans for development are significantly informed by local opinion.
A further means of reaching out and communicating with the Drumchapel community has been the production of the Drumchapel News,a magazine style publication distributed through the letterboxes of Drumchapel residents, informing of the activity and opportunities coming up in the area. This has been an important means of publicising the vibrant range of activities going on locally, as well as promoting how residents can become involved. We have produced two issues so far, and within the magazine we encourage residents to get in touch with us in the shop to hear of how to become further involved in what's going on in Drumchapel.
Our Daily Activities
The team who had undertaken the community consultation research in 2018 remained active in supporting the work of Thriving Places, and upon the success of our application to the Aspiring Communities Fund (Stage 2) worked with the community connector to implement the Community Connecting Plan for 2019/20. The team are all actively linked to Drumchapel through their experience in the area as residents and volunteers. The daily activities of the team include:
- Staffing the shop to ensure a presence there for local people dropping in with a range of queries including job applications, crisis interventions, home office enquiries for refugee families, school matters, reporting of concerns, support and care over tea and coffee
- Supporting local organisations in their delivery of support and services for local people, including Friendship House at Essenside Church, Drumchapel Asian Forum, community coach trip outings, presentations at the Breakfast and Blether community network events, Drumchapel Early Years Network, Drumchapel Community Council.
- Organisation and delivery of community learning opportunities including ESOL
How You Can Get Involved
The Thriving Places community office, local within the Chest Heart and Stroke Scotland Community Hub, can be found in Dunkenny Square, Drumchapel Shopping Centre, G15 8NB. If you would like to get in touch please contact Ted Scanlon on 07387 100182 or Morven Clark on 07492 399707 or email Ted@cernachha.co.uk
Drumchapel Thriving Places Steering Group Papers
The Community Connecting Plan 2021-24 for Drumchapel Can be found here: Drumchapel Thriving Places Community Connecting Plan 2021-24 [173kb]
The locality plan for Drumpchapel can be found here: Drumchapel Locality Plan [1Mb]
Read the Drumchapel Community Research Report here: Community Research Report [1Mb]