A charity organisation that provides peer support to vulnerable people in Lanarkshire is celebrating a milestone anniversary with a huge event.
Neighbourhood Networks helps its members to live independent lives and be fully involved within their local communities.
It has three networks in Wishaw, and two in Cumbernauld while others across North Lanarkshire include the towns of Shotts, Motherwell, Bellshill, Coatbridge, Airdrie, and Kilsyth. And in South Lanarkshire they support people in networks in East Kilbride and the Lanark/Clydesdale areas.
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Members and their families, staff and volunteers will descend on the Helix Park in Falkirk this weekend as Neighbourhood Networks celebrates its 20th birthday. North Lanarkshire group members met recently to prepare prizes for the raffle and tombola at the event.
Heather Calvo, CEO of Neighbour Networks, said: “The organisation was launched in May 2001. So we’re having our 20th birthday celebration but there’s been a bit of a delay because of Covid, as it’s now 21 years. Most of our networks have been running that length of time but Shotts was a bit later on.
“The celebration is a spring fete we’ll be showing some organisational film and showcasing talent that people have such as creative writing, and there’s a talent show. We’re having tombolas, raffles, and there will be catering, and of course cake – seeing as it’s a birthday party. It’s our first in-person event since Covid and there will be 200 people coming along to it.
Heather admits that the pandemic and lockdown threw up difficult challenges for members and the charity organisation.
She continued: “It’s been a hard time for everyone but the network has helped people stay strong and connected to one another. There’s been a lot of resilience there. We’re a registered housing support service and have community living workers who were able to go round and do welfare calls and check in on people and collect prescriptions during lockdown.
“We’re all about peer support and people helping each other and there was a lot of that during Covid, and a lot of skills developed too.
“Sunday is not only our anniversary but a celebration of coming through that time.”
For more info on Neighbourhood Networks see their Facebook page or visit: neighbourhoodnetworks.org
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