Community Messengers project receives national recognition

Published Friday, 08 January 2021

A community engagement approach with over 200 volunteers, has been praised by the Local Government Association (LGA) and highlighted as good practice.

The Community Messengers project, led by Andrea Buckley of Coventry City Council, has helped relay important messages about COVID-19 to the many different communities in the city and make them relevant through a network of volunteers. 

The project, which started in the summer, has successfully used faith, voluntary, charity and community group networks to get relevant and timely messages into the heart of different communities. 

Councillor David Welsh, Cabinet Portfolio Holder for Communities and Housing, said:

“This really is a great piece of work and it’s so positive that over 200 community leaders in the city have come forward to work with Andrea and her team. I am also glad the LGA has recognised this as good practice. Well done.”

The project is successful as Community Messengers tailor information from regular briefings to make sure all in the community understand how the legislation affects them. Messengers are quick to spot any misunderstandings and gaps in communication, helping shape any future messages.  This has included translating messages into many languages and making timely videos with groups such as Positive Youth Foundation, to encourage people to support Government guidelines. 

Leader of the Council, Councillor George Duggins, said:

“The city’s response to the pandemic continues to be fantastic and everyone has pulled together to stay safe and remain positive. Getting correct messages out around COVID and identifying areas of need has been critically important and this project is an excellent example.

“Thank you to all of the people who have volunteered their time as Community Messengers and to all of the partners, community groups and Council colleagues who have made this project a success and earned deserved national recognition.”

If anyone is interested in becoming a community messenger or would like to find out more about what’s involved, get in touch at [email protected].

People can commit as little or as much time as they are able to and full support is given.

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