Think Links, Think Rural, Think Sustainability
The project sought to undertake a complete community needs audit of rural wards in Neath Port Talbot and carry out a specific Action Plan for future activity, and identify support required in rural wards through engagement and communication with those living and working in rural areas. The aim of the project is to break down barriers and improve links between all of the rural communities including residents, organisations working within the rural wards, Community, Voluntary, Private and Public sectors of Neath Port Talbot, and to make wider links with other rural and non rural areas in order to facilitate community capacity building & empowerment, and to share best practice. The project will gather information for an action plan which will identify the gaps in provision and the potential for further development in rural wards by recommending the types of projects that should be funded in the future based on the feedback received from local residents, farmers, businesses, young people and community groups.
A project officer was employed to carry out the community audit and produce the action plan. The audit was carried out through engaging those living and working in the rural areas of Neath Port Talbot, mainly through meetings and questionnaires. A host of issues were identified as cause for concern and improvement, including lack of transport, building on rural tourism, employment in rural areas, local business support, broadband speed/connection, youth facilities and exploring new practices in farm diversification. Questionnaire responses were received from 455 residents, 65 businesses, 24 farmers and 110 young people and meetings with various stakeholders, community groups and organizations contributed to the final report for Neath Port Talbot’s Local Action Group, Innovate, to carry forward into their next Local Development Strategy, which outlines their priorities, outcomes and targets for the life of the next RDP Programme.
Please click here to read the Think Links Final Report.