A pilot project working with three communities in Wales to imagine and plan for ‘Better Futures’.
The Better Futures Wales Project is a six-month project funded by the National Lottery Emerging Futures Fund (ending on 31 March 2021). WCVA has worked in partnership with the School of International Futures to undertake this pilot across three communities in Wales.
This project builds on discussions with diverse voluntary and community groups about how we can shape a positive future in the wake of Covid-19.
The purpose of the project is to encourage participants and their communities to dream about what a better future looks like for them and to develop an action plan for implementation.
Through an open recruitment process three communities were identified, two of place and one of young people.
The two communities of place were Ruthin / Denbigh and Aberystwyth, and the community of young people were engaged through EYST (Ethnic Youth Support Team).
We also recruited three facilitators from within Wales to support the delivery and increase local skills and knowledge in community foresight.
The chosen methodology for this project was a proven community futures methodology called ‘Seeds of Change’. This was developed by the Good Anthropocene and uses accessible and straightforward futures methods which are particularly suited to engaging communities and enabling them to imagine their own futures and create change.
Each community participated in two workshops. The first was about ‘dreaming big’ and using positive ‘seeds of change’ to explore the ripple effect that ideas, small scale projects or innovation can have. In workshop one, ‘futures wheels’ were used to capture the narrative from each of the groups.
In workshop two the ‘Three Horizons’ technique was used to enable the communities to build the steps to their preferred future.
As part of the process, each community developed its own community foresight report including a selection of preferred futures. These futures are used to develop high-level action plans which enable them to start working towards their vision.
SHARING THE FINDINGS
As part of the project a suite of resources have been developed to support and enable community-led foresight projects across Wales.
BUILDING BETTER FUTURES: TOOLKIT
This toolkit had been developed from the foresight exercises we ran with our three pilot communities in Wales. We hope the practical tools set out in this toolkit will now help people to imagine and to take steps to achieve the better futures they want to see.
Aimee Parker leads WCVA’s Better Futures Wales project, a pilot project working with three communities in Wales to imagine and plan for ‘Better Futures’. Here she explains more about the methodology used by the project.
Here Aimee describes using the futures methodology with Aber Food Surplus, a community based organization based in Aberystwyth. They are taking action to reduce food waste in the area by redistributing surplus food amongst the community.
In Ruthin and Denbigh we worked with three community organisations. These were Resource CIC, Drosi Bikes, and Y Tŷ Gwyrdd. This was an opportunity for three newly established organisations to work together… an opportunity which they embraced!
Aimee talks about her experiences working with EYST, engaging young people and helping them plan for and imagine a ‘better future’.
For more information on this project please get in touch by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org.