Representation and Liaison
Communities 1st works to support the voice and influence of the voluntary, community and social enterprise organisations (VCSEs) across the districts of St Albans, Hertsmere and beyond.
We do this by facilitating local forums which bring together voluntary organisations, community groups and social enterprises to develop strategic priorities and collaborative working.
Part of our role at the heart of our community is to understand the issues our members face, promote the fantastic work they do, and help keep decision makers informed of the challenges they overcome, the support they provide to our local community and the amazing value of the work they do.
Many of our member organisations are small and lack the resources to promote the value of the work they do and the issues they face effectively. By understanding and communicating this information in a coordinated way, we are able to ensure that their collective voice is heard, especially on decision-making partnerships. This includes:
- Representing the community sector on St Albans District Council and Hertsmere Borough Council's Strategic Partnership, Economic Partnership and Health and Wellbeing Partnership and Inclusion and Equalities Partnership
- Attending over 20 forums a year including the Faith and Culture Enterprise (FACE), Loneliness, Public Health, Parish meetings, Herts County Council consultation
- Delivering an annual conference, themed in line with the issues our members raise and attended by decision makers and influencers
- Surveying our members on a range of topics to make sure we are able to understand and accurately represent their views
- Providing regular digital communication through newsletters and social media and we contribute to radio programmes and local press, promoting the work of our members and celebrating Good News stories.
- Promoting social responsibility within the local business community
- Working with District and County Councils to promote the value of our members and encourage them to continue to provide significant funds to support the sector
- Feedback from our surveys makes clear that our members value our representative role
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