Heart of Hastings CLT Limited is committed to using a bottom-up development approach to achieve its aims of providing affordable homes and workspaces, alongside inclusive opportunity for marginalised communities within regeneration projects.
To achieve this, we have employed a Community Organiser to support our BUD Team in their struggle over the last three years to deliver community-led regeneration on a problematic, contaminated site in the middle of the Southeast’s most deprived neighbourhoods.
Their campaign had the explicit intention to repeat the use of the Organisation Workshop (OW) technique piloted at Marsh Farm. In May 2019, 37 participants completed a successful, four-week OW at the derelict Observer Building in Hastings. We want to share our insight of the potential of this powerful and empowering approach and work with others to apply it elsewhere.
At the same time, we became the accountable body for a new Social Action Hub for the South-east Coast in partnership with Brighton & Hove CLT. Although set up to address housing needs, both these organisations have engaged people across a wide range of connected issues through their CO approach.
We are now at the exciting point of delivering training, both one-day courses and an accredited CO course. With an eye on sustaining the CO approach, we are also developing income generating CO outreach projects with mainstream partners. We are determined to champion the use of the OW technique across the UK.
All of this would benefit from sharing experiences with other CO organisations. The support and learning we gained from the relationship with Marsh Farm has been essential to our achievement. For our organisation, the role of trustee of the CO Board is an ideal opportunity, that is compatible with our capacity, to broaden out this reciprocal relationship for the benefit of all CO organisation.