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What happens when you say yes to your community?

Natalie Leach explains the positive impact of becoming involved in village life

I’ve been a parish councillor in my village in Essex for six months now. Our primary function is to act on behalf of our residents, and provide a link between them and the district and county councils. We comment on, support or object to planning applications, maintain public spaces, give out grants to small local organisations, pay for special constables to police the village, manage the allotments, and dozens of other things. We meet for two hours on the first Tuesday of every month to vote on these issues and once a year we hold an Annual Parish Assembly, where residents can also vote on particular topics. This is how I ended up as a volunteer litter-picker, too – the resident who organises the group was there and reeled me in on the promise that my kids would love the bright yellow vest and dinosaur shaped picker, and I left full of plans to teach them about civic duty and caring for your environment. So far, they have not joined me.

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Find the complete article and many more in this issue of Be Kind - July 2019
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