What are Birmingham Community Matters surgeries?
At Birmingham Community Matters surgeries, held in various venues around Birmingham, people with experience of running community groups and projects are on hand to answer questions from people who are just getting started, or who have questions about their own community projects.
Our helpers are called Community Matters Helpers. They are people with relevant experience and expertise, which they may have acquired through running community groups themselves, or in a professional capacity.
Our surgeries are always free to attend, and informal. To say we sit around eating cake and drinking tea would do a disservice to the valuable conversations and exciting ideas we hear at each one. But a smiley greeting and refreshments are very much part of our welcoming ethos. Anyone is welcome to drop in and talk about the kind of support they need. Perhaps it’s related to setting up a group, buying equipment, working with volunteers, or accessing grants and other funding.
It doesn’t matter where you are in the process: mere acorns of ideas are as valued as the plans of fully formed organisations looking to branch out.
If you call in, we will listen to your initial queries and aim to match you with the volunteer Helper who is best placed to help. Then you can work through questions and ideas together. There are no formal talks, agenda or presentations.
We’ll aim to keep in touch with you afterwards, so we can follow up with further support, and hear the outcomes of your ventures. We hope you might be able to pass on your experience and knowledge down the line – and help others on their way to success.