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8 simple ways you can help ensure residentsí groups reflect their communities (29 Mar 08)

Itís not easy, but how do you make sure residentsí groups do involve everyone?

Youíre expected to make sure all sections of the community feel welcome, and able to be involved. Only by doing so can you ensure your services meet everybodyís needs.

Here are 8 ways to achieve your aim:

Always use the kind of incentives and activities that make people want to join in
Try things that cross all boundaries. Talent Contests (like Britainís Got Talent on TV) are a good example because they cross all cultural boundaries and always guarantee a good level of involvement from the whole community.

It always helps if you offer prizes to attend well known cultural events, as people from all ethnic backgrounds seem to like them. Trips to see Lion King or the Russian Ballet with all expenses paid can just do the trick.

Other ideas include holding a national dress event or cultural days where you have prizes such as ipods or flat screen TVís. These prizes might seem extravagant but they do generate interest from people who might not otherwise turn up.

Family Mosiac Housing Association reports that they get hundreds of tenants completing surveys and questionnaires and attending events when they offer incentives like these.

Mixed football tournaments, where male and female players participate are also a big crowd puller. Whatís more, theyíre a sure way to get lots of young people joining in. They just love the chance to show off their skills and emulate their football heroes.

Make sure residentsí groups know about their responsibilities to other residents

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