Balsall Heath Forum
Cost of project
Balsall Heath Forum was started in 1994 when local residents were given a piece of land by the Council that used to be a Drugs Den. This place is now a welcoming site, with allotments where residents can grow vegetables and plants.
What is Balsall Heath Forum?
In the past, Balsall Heath has had problems with high crime levels, drug dealing and prostitution, and it was decided as a Community that something had to be done about this through a street watch campaign – crime levels dropped within 6 months. This in turn created the startup of Balsall Heath Forum by residents to help carry on improving the area through their passion and commitment. Members are elected each year from the local neighbourhood to join the Forum which then empowers local residents by promoting and encouraging neighbourhood associations. The Forum gives tools to the residents to be able to deal with any issues there may be for them in the area – safety/ environmental for example. The Forum also acts as a link between the neighbourhood and the service providers. Currently, there are 10 active residents’ groups who are working closely with the Balsall Heath Forum to help create a service that can be tailor made to their needs depending on the project they are creating, as one size does not fit all.
If successful, what will you use your LoveBrum funding for?
The money would go towards helping to deliver our “Youth Zone” project, a project where the Youth in the local area will have somewhere safe to go. Currently, there is nowhere for them to go that is safe, and the Forum would like to work with the young adults to help create a perfect environment for them. Young people are feeling less a part of the community, and this is evident in the interaction that Balsall Heath Forum has with them, plus the low levels of employment within the area speaks for itself. There is a noticeable skills shortage too, yet no schemes are being offered locally to give young adults a good start, leading to isolation and an identity crisis which is at breaking point. This is something that needs to change. Balsall Heath Forum wish to give young people a louder voice through the already successful Dynamic Youth Awards, and show them that their opinion is valued as they will be consulted with during the evening. Balsall Heath Forum will use every opportunity to hold sessions, and to obtain the views and aspirations of the young in the process, thus helping to create this “Youth Zone “ for them.
Where can people go to find out more about Balsall Heath Forum?