Background and Challenges
Our amazing clients, the London Borough of Redbridge (LBR), embarked on a capital asset and social change programme called the Community Hubs programme. The goal was to build six state-of-the-art community hubs across the borough, working in collaboration with local residents to improve facilities and access to services. These hubs provided essential services such as libraries, GP surgeries, and children's centres, while also serving as spaces for community activities.
We were commissioned to lay the foundations for future hub development in Hainault, in partnership with the Hainault Forest Community Association (HFCA) a community centre, social club, and nursery that does an excellent job of bringing together the local community in the Hainault area. The challenge however, was to lay solid foundations for the future development of the Hainault Community Hub.
The project had three key aims:
- Promote community cohesion
- Co-design an effective multidisciplinary working model
- Provide future scope for development of the Hub
Trueman Change Involvement
Working closely with the HFCA team, we collaborated on designing a new headline strategy and business plan. Through workshops and engagement with various stakeholders, including the HFCA leadership team, members, and local community visitors, we outlined HFCA's vision to integrate their activities with the future hub development.
To provide a clear baseline for the organisation's future, we conducted a thorough health check of HFCA, examining areas such as key income streams, membership, marketing, skills, leadership, and culture.
We engaged with HFCA's leadership team, members, and local community visitors to co-design a vision for integrating their activities with the development of the new Hainault Hub. We facilitated workshops and engaged in extensive research, benchmarking, geographical mapping, and analysis, culminating in a comprehensive evaluation report, which helped HFCA articulate their ideas and strategies for change.
Outcomes and Solutions
Through our collaboration, HFCA was able to define their future involvement in the development of the Hainault Hub. Our work deepened partner relationships and resulted in HFCA securing a place on the design panel for the new hub.
We developed a business strategy that outlined HFCA's vision for integration and provided a clear roadmap for their involvement over the next 1-5 years. Instead of providing solutions, our approach focused on empowering the HFCA team to design and plan their own solutions, in line with the principles of co-design. The outcomes of our work enabled HFCA to embrace change and restore positivity for a new vision of the local community as the "Heart of Hainault."
Our work not only strengthened the partnership between HFCA, the Council, and other local groups but also contributed to a deeper understanding of the local community's needs and priorities. By aligning HFCA's strategic direction with the Hainault Hub priorities, we facilitated more sustainable thinking about the organisation's future.