Youngsters speak out as part of 'I Heart Wisbech' campaign

Young people learned how they could have a positive impact on the future of their town when more than 150 students gathered together as part of the ‘I Heart Wisbech’ campaign. Picture: AMY AMPS

Young people learned how they could have a positive impact on the future of their town when more than 150 students gathered together as part of the 'I Heart Wisbech' campaign. Picture: AMY AMPS

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Young people learned how they could have a positive impact on the future of their town when more than 150 students gathered together as part of the 'I Heart Wisbech' campaign.

Wisbech's Thomas Clarkson Academy hosted an engagement event earlier this month so students could hear the results of the 'I Heart Wisbech' community survey - and find out how they can get involved in the campaign.

More than 1,000 people have taken part in the survey over the past six months, giving their ideas on what was good about the town, not so good and what could be changed.

Now the results are being shared with the community to inform residents how feedback will be used to help develop future services and projects in the town.

The Thomas Clarkson event was the fourth engagement event in the town, following others at the Oasis Centre, Queen Mary Centre and Rosmini Centre.

The survey feedback has also been shared with consultants producing Fenland's four Growing Fenland Masterplans, to help inform the draft Masterplan for Wisbech.

Tim Mann, the professional artist behind the Crowded Room Wisbech project, was invited to present the Thomas Clarkson event.

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He highlighted what other students had said in the survey, and what was important to them as younger people living in Wisbech.

Friendship and respect topped the most important things, closely followed by support networks (including teachers), diversity, community events, facilities and family.

Students also took part in a lively debate to discuss what they could do to help improve the town.

Russell Rolph, of Support Cambridgeshire, who is managing the project on behalf of the I Heart Wisbech team, said: "The next step is all about working even more closely with residents who wanted to be contacted after the community survey and want to do something positive for their town.

"We need to work with these people through the partnership and give them the opportunity to become involved, and to ensure they have the confidence, skills and support to be able to do so.

"There's a lot already happening in Wisbech which residents young and old can get involved in and exciting plans for the future they can play a role in too." Councillor Chris Boden, leader of Fenland District Council, said: "It's essential that the voice of Wisbech's young people is included in the I Heart Wisbech campaign, and that we are all involved in shaping future services and resident-led activities in the town. Young people's views are valued and will have a positive impact on our community."

The I Heart Wisbech team is made up of Cambridgeshire County Council, Fenland District Council, Wisbech Town Council, Support Cambridgeshire, Care Network Cambridgeshire, Clarion, CPSL Mind, Ferry Project, HealthWatch, Hunts Forum of Voluntary Organisations, Living Sport and the Oasis Community Development Trust.

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