Join the Bristol Holistic Community Development Circle

Economic & community development
South West
Emerging opportunity

Aims and activities

Aims and questions

T‍his CTRLshift project in Bristol will prototype an innovative approach to building relationships between funders, communities and professionals.

We will co-develop projects that are led by the community, guided and supported by professionals, and resourced by funders. We expect to enable synergies and produce holistic development that addresses whole community needs. 

What if funders could clearly communicate their institutional needs to communities and professionals, and those stakeholders could respond with their own?

What if we could adopt a holistic approach, which addresses the interconnected range of community needs, rather than a piecemeal one?

What if this container could enable synergies between and across all groups, reducing duplication, enabling partnerships, and leveraging collective intelligence?

This programme holds space for such conversations, and is the start of what we hope will be long-term collaborations to deliver community-led development. 

Our aim is to establish a Holistic Community Development implementation circle that has three sub-circles:

Communities - Bristol-based groups, such as neighbourhood mutual aid, housing cooperatives, Transition Towns, working class advocacy and independent politics groups.

Professionals (social entrepreneurs, charities, ethical businesses) with successful experience in the fields of: community organising, governance with healthy power, cooperative economics, regenerative justice, environmentalism, lifelong learning, healthcare, artistic culture.

Funders - philanthropic, anchor institutions (local authorities, universities, statutory services, NHS), private sector. Lankelly Chase is the first confirmed participating funder.

We will facilitate sociocratic meetings for each sub-circle and between them, where we will identify needs and offers. Based on the priorities and areas of collaboration identified, we expect coalitions of communities, professionals and funders to launch projects.

The benefits:
●       Get to know other funders - the people and institutions - that are committed to holistic community development.
●       Collaborate with community representatives and development professionals without giving up your organisational autonomy.
●       Co-design (and then, if appropriate for your institution, fund and deliver) projects that meet local needs across the integrated range of acupuncture points (e.g. poverty, climate, healthcare), are backed by professional expertise, and match your funding goals.
●       Help your institution to take a leading role in prototyping a new way to fund and deliver projects.

How to get involved

If you’d like to find out more, we’d love to have a chat. Please get in touch with Carolina so we can arrange a time to speak (Carolina de Oliveira

Join us in the spirit of creativity and exploration, in order to achieve better outcomes for all!

Who's involved

This CTRLshift project was seed funded by The National Lottery Community Fund through the Transition Together project, with additional funding provided by Lankelly Chase who are part of the implementation steering circle.  We are grateful to our funders for making this work possible.

Our team consists of Bristol residents and neighbourhood democracy enthusiasts Ruth Biddlecombe and Rishi Graham, Nathaniel Whitestone from A Fairer Society, and community development supporter, Carolina De Oliveira.

Learning and Resources

This document describes the ecosystem, aims and approaches of our collaborators.

Something not right?