Neighbourhood activists prepare for cuts with "pay what you can" event

Good to see people who work in the front line of social action and local renewal gearing up to respond quickly to the changes that will hit work at neighbourhood level, whatever Government we have after May 6.
The National Association for Neighbourhood Management has a spring conference on May 12, and has switched pricing to “Pay what you can afford”, starting at £20. Booking here.
NANM director Ben Lee writes on their blog This one’s urgent!:

So why have we done it? Simple – it’s a reflection of how important we feel it is to bring together colleagues involved in neighbourhood working, urgently in the week after the general election. We see it as core to our role to help practitioners take stock of the election and its implications, motivate ourselves to make the case for
neighbourhood working in the shadow of massive cuts, and begin shaping the agenda ourselves – not just respond to it.

The coming weeks and months will be a crucial time for all of us. On the one hand there is more support and hard evidence than we’ve ever had for the principles of neighbourhood action, localism and empowering citizens through co-delivery. But while some local agencies hold their nerve and take considered decisions about radical devolved service models, others are already taking rushed decisions to reduce or cancel ‘pilot’ programmes – flying in the face of evidence.

We believe local practitioners and community activists need to be taking the best evidence and achievments of neighbourhood working to the heart of the debates about cuts. But to do that we need to enable as many of you as possible to attend on 12 May to take stock and create the best arguments we can. We hope you share our sense of urgency and we hope to see you there.

I hope the Big Society Network – which I’ve written about here – and anyone else in the field, take the chance to get together on May 12. Ben tells me it’s going to be a fairly flexible agenda. I’m also hopeful New Start magazine will be organising something on May 25. I’ll let you know when I hear more.
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