Helen has spent 18 years working in social housing, economic development and regeneration. In her fifties, Helen moved back to the area she’d grown up in, and didn’t know anyone – but through Norris Green Park, she’s got to know 300 people in her community. She wants to extend that same opportunity for connection to other people.
Another great time at family growing club. Cabbages, cauliflower & pea seedlings planted out in raised beds. We built a cloche & we had a go at planting irises in the new flower bed by the fence. Thanks @TorusFoundation for funding this project. #norrisgreenpark #norrisgreen pic.twitter.com/Cux4PKRc54— Friends of Norris Green Park (@NGPFriends) September 19, 2020
Helen has identified parks as key spaces in building connection in local communities, particularly during the Covid recovery. During the pandemic, community spirit flourished, and Helen wants to harness this into a more formal local network, fostering new community-led approaches to tackle neighbourhood problems, and replicating the successful community bonds that Friends of Norris Green Park has forged through its model to other parks in Liverpool – and beyond.
Helen applied to the Multiplier programme for the opportunity to invest more time and energy into Norris Green Park; to expand her vision with a mentor; and to build a coalition with fellow grassroots leaders who shared her commitment to creating better connected communities.
So honoured to be chosen & benefiting from such an intense programme with an incredible bunch of talented people & innovative projects around the UK. Excited for the next 8 months and bringing all this learning back to @NGPFriends 💚 Thank U @TheCaresFamily @alexsmith1982 https://t.co/Jl7jdgSt4w— Helen Ball (@HelenSocKnowHow) February 8, 2021
In our disconnected age, The Cares Family is passionate about creating space for people of all ages to come together and share time, stories and experiences. Helen shares this vision and was selected to be a Multiplier to inspire others to see parks the way she sees them – ‘community centres without a roof.’