This time last month most of us were just getting over the Christmas period and ready for New Years – I certainly hope you had a great time!

Fast forward to one month later and we are all well back into the swing of things.

We’ve kicked January off to a good start with planning for 2019 and starting to see some trends of ideas – which is all very exciting!

Our newsletter is now done – click here to download the electronic version – and we have engaged with a lot more residents than I thought we would. This is down to going along to the Coffee Morning held for the residents at Craddock Court.

As I mentioned in one of my previous blog posts, it can be difficult this time of year to do this type of work as door knocking is pretty much out of the question so we have to find new ways to engage with residents and retirement housing along with flats, apartments and these types of housing solutions are usually a great way to stay active and engage with residents.

We’ve also connected with and went along to Nailsworth’s Youth Forum to talk and listen to their members. The youth forum are actually on the lookout for new members so if you’re interested and would like to know more, please get in touch. We will be going back the Nailsworth Youth Forum in a couple of weeks.

Visiting, both Craddock Court and Nailsworth’s Youth Forum were good ways to engage with residents and listen to their loves, concerns and ideas for the area.

Another exciting thing that has started this month is the Community Organising Level 3 Qualification.

There are two parts to the qualification; the award which lasts for 11 weeks and then the certificate. So, I’m going to be kept busy – that’s for sure!

As we close out January and go into February, we have our team meeting which is usually great fun and a good way to discuss any challenges that have arisen over the last month.

In February we are going to be going back to TWO coffee mornings held at Craddock Court to continue our discussions and a local councillor will be joining us on the 12th of Feb to meet and listen to the Craddock Court residents.

We will also be visiting a similar project (yet very different) in the Forest of Dean during February as part of my development to see how different communities really are. We have already done something similar with Tewkesbury which was a great experience.

On the 26th February we’re also planning to bring local residents we have already met together to discuss ideas, but anyone is welcome to attend and there will be drinks and cakes available. More details will be available on our Facebook page here in the next couple of weeks. If you are a local resident in Forest Green and would like to come along, you are more than welcome.

Alongside all of this, most of our February will also be delivering the Friends of Forest Green newsletter so make sure to look out for it as this is what your fellow residents are saying.

So, we have an action-packed February which is great, and we know things will also crop up.

The final thing for me to say is if you do like the Friends of Forest Green’s Facebook page then you will start to notice that we will be documenting the journey of the project more with myself recording short clips of my day.

Documenting the project will also include interviewing residents (that want to be interviewed) as well as people we meet during the project. We will be starting with Emma Keating-Clarke from the Stroud District Council in the next week as Emma basically made this project happen!

So, there are a few things to look for but don’t worry as every month I will continue to write monthly blog updates containing everything that has happened.

I’ll look forward to writing February’s post in about 30 days’ time!

Until then,

Luke Burrows