Lowestoft Rising works to help town fulfil its potential

Phil Aves

Phil Aves - Credit: Archant

Sometimes people ask me what Lowestoft Rising actually does for the town. And the simple answer is nothing.

The Lowestoft Conference. Picture: Mick Howes

The Lowestoft Conference. Picture: Mick Howes - Credit: Archant

We are a partnership of the willing that has learnt the best way to get things done is to get others who are better equipped to do it.

So we do nothing, but we achieve so much together with partners leading the work.

This may sound a strange concept but it works, the benefit we bring is our ability to pull people together and give them the headroom to get on and deliver, often securing new funding to do it.

We even have a saying that goes: 'Don't let those who say it can't be done; get in the way of those who are doing it'.

So we have lots of people helping schools and colleges raise aspirations, and results, in their students, we have a whole cultural army of organisations bringing great art and culture to our schools through a Cultural Educational partnership.

We have almost 50 trained mentors helping older students cope. We have a new Foodbank up and running full of food that the good people of Waveney have donated, run by local people with local volunteers helping out.

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We have a structured multi-agency process, backed by Government funding, to help those who are most affected by alcohol, drugs, mental health and homelessness.

We have a Mental Health Ambassador for the town, who just led a fantastic conference here in Lowestoft on trauma based approach. We are on our fourth Collaboration Academy training people to work together across the system.

We have a Summer Festival in its fourth year led by a number of local charities all pulling together to put on something free for the people of Lowestoft to give us Pride.

We held a Voluntary Sector Event last week to showcase what 45 of our very valuable VCS organisations can do. We have Lowestoft Ogogo that gets people active led by Sentinel Leisure; we have a volunteer co-ordinator that helps people get into volunteering led by Access Community Trust.

We are working with GPs across Lowestoft to help deliver Social Prescribing in every surgery.

Those are just a few of the nothings we do, so while I may say we do nothing we are achieving so much to help this town fulfil its potential.

Please don't talk it down.