Exciting plans to boost the borough’s economic prosperity and build stronger, more integrated communities have been launched.
Our Community, Our Future is the name of the Social Integration Strategy produced by Blackburn with Darwen Borough Council, its partners and the Local Integration Partnership.
The strategy sets out how money awarded to the borough through the Ministry for Housing, Communities & Local Government’s Integrated Communities programme will be put to good use. It was launched at a special event in Blackburn Museum on Thursday 6 December, attended by the government’s Faith Minster, Lord Bourne.
Also in attendance were members of the Local Integration Partnership (LIP). This group brings together representatives of the borough’s businesses, schools and colleges, health organisations, the voluntary, community and faith sector, Youth MPs and Sport England, as well as key councillors. The Department for Work & Pensions is a key partner in Blackburn with Darwen’s social integration programme, and is also represented on the LIP.
Harry Catherall, Chief Executive of Blackburn with Darwen Borough Council, said:
“Blackburn with Darwen was chosen as one of five national Integration Partnership Areas because the government recognised the borough’s fantastic track record of delivery on community cohesion and integration, as well as our willingness to try new approaches. We are delighted to have been working with MHCLG since March to pull together a comprehensive strategy with some innovative thinking, particularly around transport as a barrier to integration and working with the borough’s employers to ensure the workplace offers people a chance to connect with others from backgrounds different to their own.
“Our priorities capture so succinctly what this agenda is about: breaking down barriers and creating opportunities for all sections of the community, to achieve our vision of a borough where everyone is treated fairly and everyone feels that they belong here.”
Councillor Mohammed Khan, who is Chair of the Local Integration Partnership (LIP), commented:
“The Borough Council is committed to improving social integration and recognises that this is something that we cannot do in isolation. Joined-up working with key partners and stakeholders is vital to achieve our goals under the Our Community, Our Future strategy, and the role of the Local Integration Partnership is to oversee Blackburn with Darwen’s programme to ensure our ambitions are realised for the benefit of everyone in the borough.”
A key partner on the borough’s social integration work”