…For Voluntary, Community, Social Enterprise…
A few questions answered from community organisations in Waltham Forest and Redbridge…
How are you currently involved with the Voluntary and Community Sector?
I support others that get involved: Co-ordinating volunteers for various festivals including Words over Waltham Forest and the Art Trail.
I’ve supported and trained a huge number of organisations — London Borough of Waltham Forest, Redbridge Volunteer Centre, the Citizens Advice Bureau, many community centres and services in volunteer management and community engagement.
How will you help to ensure its survival and success if you are elected/re-elected in May?
We don’t need the cuts that have been meted out to us. Our elected Green MP Caroline Lucas has spent the last five years fighting the cuts to public services and I will do the same. Along with many leading economists but few political parties, we stand AGAINST austerity.
I will continue to campaign for the retention of a range of services that invest in our communities: the Disability Resource Centre, for example. I will fight to retain funding, but also support organisations, individuals and enterprise to work co-operatively together. Current systems and low funds force organisations into competition which helps no-one.
Which of your Party’s policies will have the greatest effect on the Voluntary and Community Sector as a whole?
Our policies support people, communities and the planet. Green policy would relieve the sector of the huge pressure it is under now by resourcing essential services and respecting the efforts it takes to build communities.
Essential payments paid WITHOUT sanction: Community centres, advice centres, Foodbanks able to manage demand and concentrate on community building, not firefighting.
Real affordable housing: so that homeless charities don’t have to pick up the pieces
No forced work programmes: Inspiring, life-changing volunteer programmes able to support people to contribute or move into work without hindrance.
Action on the Environment: tackling atrocious air quality locally by making walking, cycling and public transport easier — creates spaces for our voluntary and community sector to thrive.
Our longer term vision — a basic income for all, would really change the way our country sees the voluntary and community sector. You will know of many people volunteering in their communities, or investing huge amounts of time and energy setting up a local social enterprise bringing a huge range of benefits to the community. Current policies are strangling these creative ideas which sustain us. We will work towards a time when these efforts are respected and nurtured.
Rebecca’s Page http://wfrb.greenparty.org.uk/
I’ll take action now to secure a sustainable future for all of us.