Report reveals key areas of need in our borough

Great views over Halifax, on the Beacon Hill ramble route
Great views over Halifax, on the Beacon Hill ramble route

Tens of thousands of pounds will be poured into activities addressing key needs in Calderdale thanks to an important research project.

Vital Signs Calderdale, run by the Community Foundation for Calderdale in partnership with the Courier and Huddersfield University, took the pulse of Calderdale residents to show where the borough is at and what could lie ahead in the future.

The launch of the project this month marks the next stage in the development of the Community Foundation’s investment strategy for Calderdale.

Steve Duncan, CEO of the foundation, said: “We decided to embark on this research project in order to publish a report on significant social and economic trends to tell the story of how our community is faring in key quality-of-life areas.

“As the largest local independent charitable grant maker we will use this critical knowledge to set strategic priorities, inform community grant-making, guide community engagement, and start conversations with local leaders, corporate partners and philanthropists.”

Community Foundation for Calderdale worked with principal research fellow Dr Serena McCluskey from Huddersfield University to analyse key data covering ten themes effecting quality-of-life in Calderdale.

Each week the Courier will publish findings from each individual theme. starting next week with housing and homelessness.

The foundation will announce their three key funding priorities by December and will allocate at least £100,000 to fund activities that address the identified need in Calderdale.

They will also work to leverage extra support for the third sector both in terms of attracting further philanthropic donations and assembling the business sector in Calderdale to support organisations by offering their expertise and skills.

Dr Serena McCluskey said: “Findings from this report appear to recommend a bottom-up community development approach alongside a top-down commissioner approach to target resources where they are most needed.

“This is because some areas within Calderdale are amongst the most deprived in the country, and as such are targeted by local and national policy focused on tackling inequalities which arise as a result of social disadvantage.”

The foundation will conduct ongoing in-depth research in order to accurately inform the allocation of local resources to ensure it reaches those who need it the most.