Establish the Ashby 2020 identity
Prospective areas for engagement and promotion
Identifying active volunteers
• Ashby 2020 is now a sub-group of the Town Partnership. This means we are now part of an official body and will be able to utilise some of their resources e.g. banking facilites.
• Is Ashby 2020 a suitable name? There is some feeling that it may cause confusion, given the popularity of Twenty20 cricket.
• It was suggested that our proposed aims should be:
Ashby 2020 will help Ashby become more sustainable. We will predominantly focus on environmental improvements, but will include social and economic factors. We will do this by:
o Being accessible and welcoming to all contributors and interested parties.
o Developing supportive relationships within the community.
o Celebrating social diversity while reaching towards a common goal.
o Focussing on the positives of taking action, and inspire others to do so.
o Being a non-profit collective, with any funds received in the Ashby 2020 name being used to further the success of our aims.
• What/how are we promoting? We recognise that people are not encouraged to take action by a concept alone, we need a physical presence, a vision of a sustainable Ashby is not enough. It is also apparent that we need to raise awareness of the group through word of mouth and local media, by proving regular updates on progress and ideas.
• While we would like to be an active group ourselves, we are well aware there are many clubs and societies doing good work in the town, so we will happily promote their efforts when we can.
• Information hub / community link mapping: Collating information about community groups and functions could be a valuable service from Ashby 2020 to help people locate the expertise and experience locally available, as part of the new Ashby Online website being redesigned by Socius. This could be quite a time consuming (but ultimately worthwhile) project, there might be a case for enlisting help from VAL (Voluntary Action Leicester) or V Inspired (volunteer group for people aged 16-25).
• It was suggested we invite existing groups that have environmental elements in their practises to ‘sign up’ to Ashby 2020 so their efforts can officially count towards our sustainability goals, and we can publicise what they do, giving them the credit the deserve. For example, the Rotary Club makes regular contributions to our community but their efforts are not usually announced publicly.
• An aspect of what we want to achieve seems to be the promotion of ‘feel good Ashby’, by sharing positive stories.
• Ashby Pound. There is a question of whether it needs to be a physical pound, or rather an emphasis on localism. The physical pounds are beneficial in that they help people understand the impact of their buying power locally, though they are quite expensive to print.
• 9 Carrots. A scheme used to help businesses save money towards making energy saving improvements and promotes their efforts online where shoppers can use a map to locate 9 Carrots businesses. Costs nothing to be involved, is simple, and would be successful for small businesses. Requires volunteers to approach enterprises individually and explain the process.
• Town wide green energy deal. Energy companies that offer a green tariff have been approached with a request that they give a discount to Ashby if we can sign up a significant percentage of residents to switch tariff. How do we introduce the idea to the public? There is a risk of alienating people if a new community group approaches residents with an energy deal that seems too good to be true. Establishing ourselves within Ashby as genuine and reliable will give us the credibility to approach the town.
• Big Switch Off. A nationwide project running for a week in October, highlighting wasted energy by directing people to turn off appliances etc. when not in use. We will be able to promote and support this through sustainable giveaways. Ideas and volunteers needed.
• Eco School Scheme. Already in progress locally, and would benefit from our support.
The next meeting will take place on Tuesday 7th September at 7pm.
Thank you to Legion House for use of room 4, and those all important tea and coffee facilities.