We are seeking to produce a community report on the lack of investment in our community. Our community area in East Belfast which is the Ravenhill / Woodstock area has been identified as ‘Forgot About’ due to the relative lack of community and civic infrastructure and investment. This lack of support highlights the additional challenges our community faces in responding to the heightened social, economic and health challenges existing.
Our challenges are around the lack of a safe play area for children, poor environmental facilities, poor connectivity to engage the community and little support for low income families. Falling levels of civic and community participation, more issues arising associated with loneliness and isolation as well as more and more services that are closing down.
The widening of the social needs and the social gaps which contribute towards the challenges our community faces along with the economic needs and challenges.
Our `Forgot About’ area has a relatively high proportion of vulnerable families who require additional support.
- We have high numbers of people with mental health or learning disabilities
- large numbers of pensioners living alone and lone parents who are at greater risk of social isolation
- Higher levels of overcrowding and higher proportions of people with no access to local environmental amenities.
These are issues that other communities could also identify with, but our problem is we have highlighted our needs to politicians and others in Government but no response we get put back in favour of the Bowling club in a more up market area or there is no money in the budget to do anything. The excuses are far and wide and continuous. We believe if it was in black and white and out there for others to read and see it could make a difference.