Many environmental groups are small, informal and ‘below the radar’ of regulatory bodies, local authorities and other voluntary sector support bodies We can help you network with your local council, statutory organisations or land owners, and with similar groups in South West London through the forums and networks in which we organise. We also provide networking opportunities through our Forums to help local groups to meet and share good practice.
SWLEN organises and manages Friends of Parks Groups Forums in the London Borough of Richmond upon Thames as well as the London Borough of Hounslow.
Friends Forums provide an excellent opportunity for groups from across a borough to come together to share best practice, problem solve as well as meet with Council Parks Department staff and their contractors.
Each borough Forum works slightly differently:
London Borough of Richmond upon Thames
SWLEN convenes the Annual Friends of Parks Groups Forum in Richmond Borough, which takes place every November, bringing together many of the voluntary groups with the Parks and Open Spaces Manager. The Forum has proved to be a very valuable and interesting meeting for representatives from Friends Groups throughout the borough to discuss ideas, challenges and celebrate achievements.
The next Friends Forum will be 21st November 2018.
London Borough of Hounslow
For a year trial, we have been commissioned by Hounslow Council to manage the Hounslow Friends Forum. Below is a list of the services we will be providing that will work alongside Lampton 360 Greenspace, and not replacing their service.
- Organise the Hounslow Friends Forum four times a year.
- Chairing and minute taking.
- Provide the ability for friends groups, Lampton 360 Greenspace and council officers to put items on the agenda
- Provide minutes.
- Provide ad hoc ‘critical friend’ role for the friends if required to broker things between different parties.
The first Hounslow Forum under our management was held in February 2017 and the next Forum will be May 2018, September 2018 and November 2018.
SWLEN participates in a London-wide network of friends groups, the London Green Space Friends Groups Network, where we share information and good practices. SWLEN’s CEO, Colin Cooper, is also a Trustee at Parks for London
Please contact us if you are interested in participating in our future Forums, meetings or training, or need any support or advice in running a Friends Group.
We can create a webpage with information of your group on this website, or help you develop your own website free of charge.
We will list your group on our Groups Database and include your activities and events in our What’s On events calendar to generate interest and recruit volunteers.
We can also help you create your own social media presence to promote your group, and we’ll use our own Twitter and Facebook profiles to promote your activities and events.