Building communities that benefit residents and local people
First and foremost, our schemes benefit our customers – the future residents of the communities we build – by providing the opportunity to design homes that meet their personal needs and by providing community spaces and facilities which become the backbone of a cohesive neighbourhood.
Living in a healthy home surrounded by lovely neighbours who also care for their community and the planet and being able to work and play together in the shared garden and community hub creates safety and belonging. It serves as a platform for a life full of meaning, purpose and joy.
The community garden and community hub are two essential features of our schemes. The community hub can be a place for co-working, classes and shared meals, to name a few things. It is a space that can host events and bring residents of the scheme and the local community together. This strengthens ties, builds relationships and creates a sense of community within the neighbourhood as a whole. It can also be a source of collaboration and innovation, leading to the development of local start-ups.
Our schemes boost local economic prosperity by employing local builders and tradespeople. This reinforces networks between local industry professionals and can lead to further collaborative projects. The preference for local suppliers amongst the self-builders generates more local employment than conventional developments would, and keeps the money circulating in the local economy.
Through placemaking, we listen to and understand the needs of local people then create communities that connect with the wider the neighbourhood. We actively seek to build communities in areas where we can make a significant difference to people’s lives.
Community-led housing enabler
We are an enabling developer of community-led housing, working with people who want to live in a community and fulfil their dreams and aspirations. We are increasingly approached by other community-led housing groups for advice and guidance, which we are keen to offer in the near future.
You can find out more about our model in a case study by The Confederation of Co-operative Housing and see how we’re working with the community in our Water Lilies project in the video below.
Volunteering for local initiatives
Our roots are in Bristol and our love for this city means we want to see its people and communities’ flourish. Our way of contributing is by volunteering for amazing local projects and organisations that seek to create or enable sustainable housing communities in Bristol.
We have volunteered by sitting on the steering board of:
- “We Can Make“, which is a Bristol housing initiative that supports communities to create affordable homes they want and need.
- Ambition Lawrence Weston’s’ community-led social housing project at Astry Close, which is located just a few minutes’ walk from Water Lilies.
Our managing director, Caroline Pringle, is also an Accredited Community Led Homes Advisor and volunteers as a director of Tiny House Community Bristol, a Community Benefit Society that will be developing a community-led scheme of eco-friendly tiny homes in Sea Mills.
Engaging in local events
We engage in popular Bristol events, such as Bristol Open Doors, to raise awareness about sustainable community housing and how people can get involved in projects. Our founder, Steffie Broer, volunteers regularly to speak at local and national housing conferences including Bristol Housing Festival and the Festival of Sustainable Business on the topic of Self-Build and Community-Led Housing.
In our view, thriving communities are the bedrock of society. Therefore, we will continue to expand our impact both locally and globally by supporting communities beyond those that we build.