Salford City Partnership


Results of the review of Salford Community Network

News Release

15th February 2007

An independent review of Salford Community Network (SCN) - jointly commissioned by government, Salford City Council and Salford's Local Strategic Partnership - has shown that SCN is not 'fit for purpose'.  

Salford Strategic Partnership is committed to involving the community in its decisions, to listening to residents and working closely with them to improve the city. For this reason it is vital that the structures established to represent the views of Salford's communities - of which SCN is one - work effectively.

Community Networks were set up across the country in 2001. They bring together a full range of community and voluntary sector organisations in an area - especially those that represent or work within deprived neighbourhoods and marginalised communities - to empower communities to play a part in local strategic partnerships.

SCN has supported community activity in neighbourhoods and has also supported city-wide groups including the Salford Disability Forum and the city's Lesbian Gay Bisexual and Transgender Forum.

The government has made funds available for SCN to promote community empowerment, so SCN had to demonstrate that it carried out its responsibilities effectively. This was the main subject of the review which was undertaken by a respected independent consultant.

In her findings, the consultant recognised SCN's achievements, but found that it couldn't show that it had increased the ability of community and voluntary organisations to influence decisions about the city's future.

At a meeting of the Strategic Partnership's Executive group on 15 February, members of the partnership expressed their regret at the results of the review. Cllr John Merry, the chair of the partnership, thanked SCN representatives for their commitment over the last five years and told the meeting that empowering the community is at the heart of the partnership's work.

He stressed that partners will continue to work closely with Salford people through the city's nationally acclaimed community committee and neighbourhood management structure.

Said Salford City Council leader Cllr John Merry: "We welcome this independent report and the focus it provides on work in our communities. What this report shows is that we already have a system that is widely acclaimed for consulting with the community - our network of community committees. We intend to invest in and further develop those committees to continue to serve and support our communities in the future."


Notes to editors

Salford Strategic Partnership

Salford Strategic Partnership is the local strategic partnership for Salford. It brings together senior representatives from key public, private, community and voluntary organisations to agree a common approach to improving the quality of life for people living and working in Salford.

Besides Salford Community Network, the community is represented on Salford Strategic Partnership by representatives from the city's Faith and Black and Minority Ethnic forums and Salford's eight Community Committees. Salford Council for Voluntary Services (CVS) is also on the partnership.

The partnership's priorities for Salford are set down in the Community Plan, a shared vision for the future of the city that all partners are committed to achieving. The Community Plan identifies seven key themes that reflect the way local people would like Salford to be: A healthy city, a safe city, a learning and creative city, a city where children & young people are valued, an inclusive city, an economically prosperous city, a city that's good to live in.

Salford Community Network

Salford Community Network was set up in 2001 to provide a strong voice for the community and voluntary sector on the local strategic partnership, and received funding to allow Network members to develop the skills needed for this.

The review was conducted by Nicola Sugden, a highly experienced independent consultant.

This page was last updated on 3 August 2012

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