Summary of Activity
by Ola Wojtkiewicz, Community Engagement Manager @ Sustaining Dunbar
The Local Good Food Alliance was launched by Sustaining Dunbar in early September 2020.
We have been reflecting on the journey we’ve undertaken together with the members of the alliance and below is a brief listing of our achievements to date. We would like to take stock of what we’ve done so far and let it guide the direction of our travel!
Members, Meetings & Discussions
- The Alliance involves 47 members (including groups and individuals)
- In 2020 we met 6 times (on Zoom)
- Smaller, informal one to one meetings also took place
- Lots of knowleadge exchange and brainstorming happened
- We created our own Action Plan based on local priorities and interests shared by group members
- We initiated a few ‘discussion threads’ to establish next steps/actions which will be progressed by sub groups/individual project champions (e.g. school dinners, community composting facility)
A number of collaborations have been sparked of by LGFA conversations, including a series of family cook-outs at Belhaven Community Garden (Community Carrot & BCG)
Website & Mobilize
- We created our own page on What If? wesbite
- We gave all members space to promote their activity
- We set up a new communications platform Mobilize to allow for a better group and peer to peer communication
Map of Stories
We’ve initiated a process of collecting inspiring stories which will contribute to our ambitious emerging Portrait of a Place. This took various forms:
- video interview with Belhaven Lobster
- video interview from St Baldred’s smallholding in Tyninghame
- What If? podcast – part 2 (Community Carrot & Sunny Soups)
- What If? podcast – part 3 (Belhaven Community Garden)
- blog about the Local Good Food Alliance
- We’ve established and nurtured stakeholder relationships with East Lothian Council, Dunbar and East Linton Area Partnership, Local Community Councils, East Lothian Food Friendly Network
- We presented our progress at various group meetings hosted by those organisations
- We have been updating ELC’s Climate Change Strategy Officer on our activities and efforts
- The recent East Lothian Council’s Annual Report to Cabinet (an update on the Council’s Climate Change Strategy) specifically mentioned LGFA: ‘Significant work to tackle climate change continues in our communities, despite the COVID pandemic, such as the work of Sustaining Dunbar, Dunbar & East Linton Area Partnership and other partners in developing a ‘Local Good Food Alliance’.
Sustaining Dunbar applied to various funds on behalf of LGFA or to support particular projects:
- Dunbar and East Linton Area Partnership, funding application towards equipment and community engagement at Belhaven Community Garden (successful).
- Scottish Government Community Recovery Fund, as part of a larger project, appoint a LGFA coordinator (successful).
- Keep Scotland Beautiful Community Climate Asset Fund, for community apple mill, press and related items (successful).
- Sustainable Food Places, Development Grant, to explore the potential for establishing an East Lothian-wide sustainable food partnership, (unsuccessful).
Exciting New Steps
In December we were lucky to appoint a committed LGFA Coordinator.
Naomi Barnes (firstname.lastname@example.org) has made a lot of progress during her first few weeks in post and would love to hear from you.
Here is to the new chapter of this dynamic local initative!