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Exchange – Issue 7

March 1st 2017

‘Resilient communities’ is a phrase that’s been hard to avoid in recent months and is central to the discussions about the future of Communities First.  Great though it sounds, it is much less clear what resilience means or how it might be achieved.

The latest issue of Exchange brings together a range of contributors from different policy areas to consider what makes people and communities ‘resilient’, and how this can be strengthened throughout Wales.  The authors put forward a range of ideas from which some common themes stand out:

  • It’s an all-Wales issue: while emphasis is often placed on certain areas of Wales (notably the Valleys) community resilience is important in rural and urban Wales and everywhere in-between.
  • Community buy-in is essential: there’s consensus that if people feel that policies are imposed on them, the policies won’t work.
  • Hard infrastructure can’t be ignored: our transport networks have as much of a role to play in supporting community resilience as hospitals, housing and schools.
  • Community and individual resilience go hand-in-hand: investing in individual resilience – through lifelong learning opportunities, the availability of quality jobs and adequate mental health services, for example – will strengthen community resilience.
  • It’s a long-term game: communities and the networks that form them take time to build and recover from setbacks. Developing community resilience is a long-term game.

Highlights from this issue include:

  • Professor Dave Adamson on how Wales’ economic policy could be strengthened to support community resilience;
  • Rebekah Menzies, Carnegie UK Trust, on what Wales could learn from ‘Turnaround Town’ success stories;
  • Barbara Castle and Chris Johnes on the three pillars of community resilience;
  • Jemma Bere, Keep Wales Tidy, on why the environment matters to communities’ resilience;
  • a profile of the Gellideg Foundation Group;

and plenty more. Download your copy below.

Exchange is an exclusive benefit of your Bevan Foundation subscription, so please let us know if you have any comments or suggestions.

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