A PIONEERING £178,000 project to help people's community dreams come true has been launched in Greenock.

Active8 Our Place is an aspiring community funds project, aimed at helping people living in the south west area of the town to help themselves.

Three members of staff - Viv Hearton, Lee Trotter and Jim Watson - have been appointed to the run the initiative until the end of 2019.

Willie Wilson, manager of Branchton Community Centre where the team are based, is keen to stress that it is a project for the whole of the south west.

He said: "The idea is that it is a community development project for the Greenock south west area.

"We are asking 'what are your aspirations for the future of your community?'

"With a bit of support we can make your dreams come true.

"It's really what people in the community can do for themselves, what we can do to help the community, not a list of things that they want done for them."

Project leader Viv says she is 'really excited' about the project.

She told the Tele: "There is also some funding attached to it to get things moving.

"Part of the project is aimed at reducing social isolation, getting people out of their homes and accessing local resources such as community centre and halls, lunch clubs, sharing food and community meals."

Lee, a project officer, said: "I would love for everyone in the south west - from kids to pensioners - to get a voice from this, so they feel they are making an active contribution to their community.

"I am working with children at the moment and they are keeping me smiling a lot.

"They are the future of the community."

To launch the project a competition called Mad Sad and Glad has been launched, with people asked to send in words, pictures or video to show what makes them feel that way.

Willie said: "We will try to make something happen around that theme.

"There will also be a big community get-together where everyone in the area will be invited for a brainstorming session."

Viv added: "The project is about celebrating all the good things happening in the area and creating a good community vibe."

If anyone wants to get in touch with the group or take part in the competition they can visit Activ8 Our Place on Facebook or twitter.

Activ8 Your Place is funded by the European Social Fund and the Scottish Government and several local organisations make up the steering group.


Pictured are Jim, Viv and Lee.