Tackling social isolation and supporting young people to overcome the impact of the pandemic are among the top priorities set out in a new long-term recovery plan by Chesterfield Borough Council.
Continuing to work closely with partners and the voluntary and community sector, and ensuring the borough takes the opportunity to promote a ‘green’ recovery, are also at the heart of the COVID-19 Strategic and Community Recovery approach.
The plan, which was adopted on 29 September, builds on the work already set out in the council’s Economic Recovery Plan, which was approved in July.
Councillor Jill Mannion-Brunt, cabinet member for health and wellbeing, said: “While the threat of coronavirus remains very real and we continue to prioritise our response to local need, it’s important that we look at how we move forward as a borough.
“Our community has shown such solidarity and resolve over recent months – standing side-by-side to support and protect the most vulnerable.
“The council will continue to build and support resilient communities and embrace the sense of community that people have demonstrated during this very difficult period.”
Dedicated work programmes will be developed in support of the new priorities, and an initial £30,000 Community Wellbeing Fund has been approved to help support this work.
Tackling social isolation, which many people have experienced during the pandemic – especially those who have limited access to technology – is a key focus and the council will now look at how it further supports projects and initiatives which promote social connectedness.
Supporting young people to build their skills and boost their job prospects despite the current challenges is also a top priority. The council will look to build on projects such as the recently-launched My Future platform - an innovative online careers and employability platform, believed to be the first of its kind in the UK.
Underlying all of this work is a commitment to a ‘green’ recovery and carbon reduction as part of the council’s climate change pledge.
Councillor Mannion-Brunt added: “Although these last few months have undoubtedly brought huge hardship and challenge to our communities, there are positives that we can build upon and opportunities to make sure key commitments – like tackling climate change – are an integral part of our recovery plans.”
It follows the recent announcement that up to £15,000 of neighbourhood funding is now open for applications through the Community Infrastructure Levy. Local charities and community groups in Chesterfield can bid for the cash to help support local community initiatives.
For more information about the neighbourhood funding, contact Wendy Blunt, Health and Wellbeing Officer, email@example.com or 01246 959657.