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Locals invited to get involved in building a Better Barrhead

Barrhead residents are being urged to put forward suggestions for projects which would improve the town and provide more opportunities for locals.

Participatory budgeting

The initiative is being driven by a group of local community members who have formed the Better Barrhead steering group.

A total fund of £76,000 is available for projects to improve priority areas in Barrhead, through investment from East Renfrewshire Council and a grant from the Scottish Government's Community Choices Fund.

The steering group will gather all proposals put forward by the 15 January 2018 deadline before the community decides which projects are taken forward.

Councillor Colm Merrick, Convener for Community Services and Community Safety, said: "What's so important about this fund is that it puts decisions about how we invest in Barrhead into the hands of those who live and work in the area. I'm looking forward to seeing some fantastic projects put forward, which will then be considered by the dedicated volunteers who have formed the Better Barrhead steering group. The projects which are then selected by residents will make a direct impact in improving the community so it's a fantastic opportunity for locals to get involved in shaping their area."

Any local community, voluntary or non-profit organisation can apply to the fund, even informal groups. Funding of £250 to £5000 is available to put each idea into action, the only stipulation is that projects must be of benefit to the target areas of Auchenback, Dunterlie, East Arthurlie, Dovecothall, Dalmeny or Springhill.

This method of community decision making is known as Participatory Budgeting and is a key part of the council's commitment to the Community Empowerment Act.

Application forms can be found at Barrhead Council Offices, the Library in the Foundry and Auchenback Resource Centre or you can contact or call 0141 577 3309 to request a form.

If you're interested in learning more, drop-in events  are being held on 27 November 2017 from 5pm - 8pm at Voluntary Action East Renfrewshire, 56 Kelburn Street, Undercover, Barrhead G78 1LR and 11 January 2018 from 5.30 - 8pm at Civic Room 2, East Renfrewshire Council, 211 Main Street, Barrhead G78 1SY.

Once all applications have been received, a community event will take place at St John's Church Hall on Saturday 3 March 2018. Applicants will be asked to present their idea or project to the community in attendance and the community will then vote for the projects they feel should receive funding.

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