As a local to the Portobello and Craigmillar area, I am deeply aware of the challenges and concerns facing local residents. Having grown up in Portobello, my partner and I returned to raise our family here a few years ago, and I quickly became involved in local volunteering and activism.
I have become involved in various elements of local politics, including being on Portobello Community Council. In this role I have sought to represent the voices and concerns of people in the area. I want to try and bridge the gap between what goes on in the community council, and residents themselves. People need to have their voices heard, and to do that we need make community consultations as accessible and meaningful as possible.
I have also participated in community organisations that attempt to make our area a better, more welcoming place to live. I have volunteered with the local Timebank to offer my time and skills to others in the community, contributed to environmental cleanups in local green spaces, and helped with wild planting and growing space schemes that harness derelict space in our community. This year I am also helping to organise entertainment and provide general assistance for the annual Village Fair.
Recently I have worked as part of the Save Bellfield campaign to initiate a community buyout of a local church – the first of its kind in urban Scotland. If successful, we will be able to create a space that will benefit the whole community, and offer a community-owned hub for events, arts and social engagement.
Having worked for libraries across the city, I have gained an understanding of the diverse needs of the people in this city. As a Councillor, I would use this knowledge of people’s concerns and challenges to ensure that we are as accessible and responsive as possible.
Having worked for a school in one of the most deprived areas of Edinburgh, I have seen the very real struggles of those left behind by our society, and the awful consequences when we don’t adequately support the most vulnerable in our communities. As a Councillor, I would work to support deprived communities and vulnerable individuals, so that future generations of children are given the best possible start in life.
If I was elected as a Councillor, I would work to support people from all walks of life, and foster community activities throughout Portobello, Craigmillar and Edinburgh as a whole; working to help people grow and improve their communities, and fighting to make their involvement in local government easier and more meaningful.