Community involvement is essential to ensuring that the council takes the right decisions for their citizens. Effective councils will have many mechanisms to inform, consult and involve local people in the business of the council, and elected members are at the heart of this dialogue. The community champion of the year will have worked tirelessly to use their position within the council to bring residents’ voices into council decision-making, support their projects and ideas, and bridge diverse opinions within the community.
The Community Champion award is our most popular category. The councillor who wins this award will demonstrate:
- they have championed a cause (or several) on behalf of the community using council mechanisms or structures, leading to positive change for the local area;
- visible efforts to engage communities and individuals in decisions about their local area, leading to better decisions for local people;
- an understanding of the different views of communities within their area and that they effectively facilitate discussion and representation of these views to the council;
- strong relationships with community activists and community groups that have let to tangible positive changes.
Successful submissions should:
- focus on how the councillor has used council structures to bring about a positive change in the community as opposed to volunteering or fundraising as a citizen;
- provide clear examples of work or projects they have carried out in their role as a councillor.