On Saturday 13 March 2010, 150 residents of Blaenau Gwent turned out to have their say in Safer Blaenau Gwent‘s ‘Your Voice, Your Choice’ Participatory Budgeting Event.
In total £30,000 was available for local people to decide which community safety projects would be funded in their neighbourhoods.
The pilot, supported by the Home Office, invited local residents to come up with ‘community safety’ projects of no more than £3,000, with only two criteria: projects must be delivered in Blaenau Gwent and they must address ‘community safety’ issues.
Safer Blaenau Gwent worked with the Wales PB Unit, who provided useful advice on important elements of the process, and six pre-events were arranged throughout February to raise awareness of the ‘Your Voice, Your Choice’ event. The response from the residents of Blaenau Gwent was fantastic, with 68 projects submitted, totalling nearly £180,000.
A working group, made up of residents, checked the projects to make sure that they would be of benefit to the communities of Blaenau Gwent and that they fulfilled the ‘community safety’ criteria. The group was supported by officers of the Safer Blaenau Gwent Community Safety Team.