Have you been wondering about the history of the borough, why BD Giving talks so much about power, what makes the GROW Fund special, or maybe just what my dulcet tones sound like?
Well, luckily for you, we have been working hard on a podcast series that will satisfy those curiosities and unlock even more. Over the next few weeks, Nine Miles East will tell the story of how the GROW Fund came to be and its impact on those involved in its development.
The first episodes of the podcast will be released next week. You’ll first hear from me as I set the scene for the Community Steering Group and the incredible members of our first GROW Fund cohort. They are the real heart of the GROW Fund and we are very excited to be able to share their voices with you.s
It was lovely to be formally interviewed about the work of BD Giving, and my work specifically. I get a lot of chances to speak about our work but rarely do I get questioned about it in this way.
As we have written about before, we think doing things in a participatory way has a number of benefits. Along with having more people involved in decisions that impact them, it makes a big difference to those of us who have the privilege of supporting communities in their decision-making.
I am the most cheerful about my job when I am either facilitating a decision-making process or getting to talk about the great things that are being done every day on the streets of Barking and Dagenham. I would like to think you will hear some of that in my episode.
This borough means a lot to me and I am grateful for the opportunity to share that with you.
Mindful of the future
Very often, participation gets reduced to “giving people a voice”. This overlooks the fact that everyone has a voice, what matters is if that voice gets heard and treated with respect. As you will hear yourself, we haven’t given anyone a voice. What we have given them is a platform to speak directly to you about the community that they love and the work they are doing to support it.
If you live in Barking and Dagenham, we want to hear from you as well. We hope that you feel encouraged by what you hear and feel compelled to join in with our work. If you are listening from further afield, then I hope something about our corner of the world resonates with yours. At a time when divisive rhetoric is growing, it is more important than ever to hold on to those things that we hold in common. We would love for you to listen to our stories and share your own in return. To the best of our knowledge, the GROW Fund is unique. It doesn’t need to stay that way.
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Nine Miles East will available in the places where you usually access your podcasts.