Elected members and the Community Planning Partnership (CPP) Board joined together virtually for the sixth annual Joint Engagement Event which looked back at the collective performance of the Council and the CPP over the last year.
Not surprisingly, the focus was very much on COVID-19 and the fact that partnership working has been a key strength throughout the response to the pandemic. This partnership approach will be crucial as the renewal and recovery phase progresses over the next year, as will collaborating and working with the communities of East Ayrshire who have shown such resilience over the last six months.
Reflecting on performance during the previous year, some very positive results from partnership working were highlighted at the event, including:
Of the 100 performance measures reported, 68 had either shown improving progress or were maintaining progress, with the remaining 32 being targeted for further improvement.
Reflecting on the current COVID-19 situation, Provost Jim Todd, who chaired the event, said: “This joint event gave us all an opportunity to pause and reflect on the impact that the pandemic has had on our communities. We were able to consider together how best we can continue to work in partnership to meet the new challenges that lie ahead.
“We all have our own experiences of the pandemic and we have seen the amazing way in which our communities have pulled together and responded to it. Although it’s still early days in terms of understanding the longer term impact of what has happened, some very valuable data has already been gathered which will be used to inform future plans for our partnership in addition to the comments and feedback received at the event.”
There was a clear will among partners to build on the strong foundations of the excellent progress made up to March and on the community resilience demonstrated across East Ayrshire communities in recent months. The need to respond quickly to emerging opportunities to support recovery and renewal, such as those presented by the new Ayrshire Growth Deal, was also recognised.
These actions will now be taken forward as part of the Community Plan Review, which will be concluded by March 2021, setting out the framework for partnership working across East Ayrshire over the next three years, 2021-24.