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Living Neighbourhood® Initiatives

Liz Ampt

The following is a list and brief description of each of these:

1. The Community Working to Create New Facilities – Community Playground

When asked at the return of Diary 2 to give ideas for ‘making this neighbourhood a better place to live’, a man mentioned the lack of playground facilities and the need to drive to neighbouring suburbs. It was quickly discovered that many of the young families in the area felt similarly. The following has happened to day:

  • We discovered that there is a build-it-yourself community playground scheme which has been done several times in Victoria, and obtained information;
  • We organised a meeting of anyone interested.
  • 15 people attended (parents, children [there was a crèche], and grandparents, and 18 others were interested;
  • It was facilitated by Ray Goldie from the Main Street project;
  • The outcome was a decision to 1) do some research 2) come up with a plan; 3) look for locations, and 4) get other people interested.
  • To do this, a group was formed with an initial 3 month life.

Subsequent work is continuing – with almost no involvement on our part. This means that even after the Living Neighbourhood® contract is complete, at least one part of the neighbourhood will be forging ahead with a project which brings them together as a community, and also reduces the negative impact of the car.

2. The Community Working to Reduce Traffic - Christies Beach Tourist Park Residents’ Group

While distributing Travel Blending® diaries, a recruiter reported that there was strong feeling by the people in and around the Christies Beach Caravan Park against litter, perceived hooliganism, danger walking at night etc. This was addressed by initially calling a meeting which about 40 locals attended. It was facilitated by Marjon Martin from the Living Neighbourhood® team. The 2.5 hour meeting gave all people a chance to highlight issues.

Since that time a small team of people from the Park and neighbouring areas have actively worked to address various issues including working with the CIB and Council and in many cases solving problems themselves.

3. The Community Designing a New ‘Human’ Use for a Car Park

The Christies Beach Primary School has a space on its property which has long been used for visitors to park – but is actually illegal. To redesign the use for this space, the Living Neighbourhood® team has assisted them to run a competition for the redesign. It is called ‘Plot-the-Lot’ and the following are the details:

  • There are 5 sections for entry: neighbours, primary school children, secondary school children, TAFE students, and professionals.
  • The Beach Road businesses are giving $50 vouchers for the winner of each section;
  • The local McDonalds is giving $1200 for the actual construction of the winning idea;
  • The entries will be exhibited for a week at the school and in a Main Street Shop front(so that people can interact while viewing it);
  • The awards will be presented on Friday June 16 and 6.00 with a sausage sizzle (again so that the community can get together).
  • The rebuild should be an exciting community project!

4. The Community Making their Own Laneways Safer

A neighbour once mentioned that the pedestrian/cycling laneways are important throughways in the community, but that the one near him was often dirty. He said he’d be willing to sweep it once a week if he had a bin. The result:

  • The Council provided the bin
  • He phoned on the first day to say that 4 people had thanked him;
  • We broadcast the message around the neighbourhood
  • There are now at least 4 other laneways being cared for in the same way!

5. The Community Addressing a Parking and a Speeding Problem

Another neighbour mentioned the problem of parking on both sides of the road during a Tuesday Craft meeting at a church and suggested banning parking on one side. After talking to the neighbours, the craft group and the Minister, the following is about to happen:

  • The Craft Group will have an open day for the neighbours
  • We will facilitate a session trying to understand the problem and look for a solution
  • The Minister haws suggest3ed a novel solution such as putting up banners (made by the Craft Group) to slow traffic and discourage parking – but we will see what emerges.
  • It is likely that the problem will be resolved, and that Council will have been saved the effort.

6. The School Creates a Community Work of Art – a Mosaic

As part of the Living Neighbourhood® curriculum unit in the Christies Beach Primary School, the children created a Travel Blending® /Living Neighbourhood® mosaic (about 2.5 x 2.5 metres square). It is a beautiful work of art and now adorns the entrance to the school.

7. Other Points

  • The Anglican Rector came up with the idea of holding a church service in the middle of the week for people of low mobility so that the existing service of Onkaparinga’s Community Bus could be used to get these people there (it does not run on weekends)
  • While walking along the street one day, a Living Neighbourhood® team member was chatting to a new resident in the area about the Living Neighbourhood® concept. She said she was hoping to get out of the house one day a week and meet new people. It emerged that prior to having her child she had run a playgroup. So she was put in touch with the Anglican church which had mentioned that they were anxious to restart their weekly playgroup after the previous co-ordinator had left recently.
  • A local bike shop is offering a loan-bike to people who have been identified in the Travel Blending® diaries as making appropriate trips. If they like the experience they can buy one, if not, there are plenty of other ways to travel-blend.
  • One class at the school spent a day on every form of public transport in Adelaide. This was not only a transport, but a life-experience as some people had not been to such diverse parts of Adelaide. It also resulted in a series of poems being written!
  • Doctors in the area have been offered Green Prescriptions. A Green Prescription is a recommendation to ‘get a little extra activity’ and is used for people whose condition is exacerbated by lack of exercise (e.g. sinus, asthma). These are simple ‘folders’ with space for their regular prescription pads, plus a Green Prescription pad.

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