Collaboration in the Community 

15 November 2023

[pictured left to right: Carole, Lizzie, Nicky and Hilary at the Wider Partnership Conference]

Members of our Community Led Housing and our Community Support North Yorkshire teams attended the North Yorkshire Wider Partnership conference (27 October) and these are their takeaways from the event. Carole Roberts, our Community Support Delivery Manager, shares her thoughts below.

Inspiration! Inspiration! Inspiration!

We made our way to Harrogate to take part in the annual North Yorkshire Council Wider Partnership conference at the end of October, bursting with anticipation. It was a great day, full of motivational talks, award-winning community groups, a chance to de-Zoom and meet people face-to-face, pick up information, network and share how we can support local organisations.

Connect 4, cookies and community connections

Over coffee and cookies, we browsed the marketplace, trading leaflets and sweets, making introductions and finding old friends. We also had a stand, with a game of Connect 4, a volunteering survey, case studies and lots of information. Then we all joined together for a range of fascinating talks, focussing on the power of positive relationships and community wealth building; inspirational stories backed up by evidence of impact.

What do a professor, a police officer and a policy maker have in common?

It was all about the multiple perspectives of what makes a community as we broke into workshops.

Mine was on managing community tensions, looking at risk, relationships and roles. Sitting with a professor, a police officer and a policy maker meant we covered so many different perspectives and learnt from one another.

A singalong, sobs and celebrations

After that we came back together for the community awards, where I had been lucky enough to be on the judging panel for one category. We were shown a short video of each of the nominees, with one leaving everyone in tears and even a singalong from an award-winner who had been volunteering for 70 years! Seeing the award winners was a joy and so good that they were recognised for their amazing community work. What incredible people and organisations there are in North Yorkshire.

Finally, balancing sandwiches and coffee, there was time for a final round of networking before heading off home feeling thoroughly uplifted and like a good day’s work was done in only a morning.

And, if you haven’t noticed, I think I’ve used enough alliteration in this blog apart from to say, my biggest takeaway from the day was the power of community, connections and collaboration. Where would we be without these three Cs?


Take a look at these videos from the Community Awards winners – there wasn’t a dry eye in the house.

Anne Galloway

Sustainable Swaledale

Neurodiverse Community Catterick

If you want to find out more about how to make connections in your community, or have an idea to develop your own community project do get in touch with the Community Support North Yorkshire team.

Looking to make connections? We have a variety of networks which give you the chance to chat with your peers, share ideas and be inspired. Networks cover areas such as community buildings, managing volunteering, community finance, and reuse and recycling.