Our Hillingdon Community Payback team in North West London has found a new way of delivering Community Payback (CP) through founding and utilising a special mobile unit across Thursdays to Saturdays.
Working in addition to the regular static CP team’s work that runs across 13 parks and council-owned sites in the borough, the mobile unit comes in the form of a van driven by a CP supervisor to whichever sites Hillingdon residents have flagged as needing immediate work. This comes in the form of clearing fly-tips, overgrown areas and rubbish dumped in alleyways. The team works efficiently and with 148 service users putting in 1,036 hours of CP work since March 2019, the initiative has more than proved its worth.
‘This is quality work that the team are providing to Hillingdon,’ said a Community Payback Manager. ‘The service users are thanked for the hard work by members of the public, their mindset is changed by feeling appreciated – which leads to a far more positive thought process for that person.
‘This is part of the bigger picture – changing someone’s life choices by making that person feel appreciated. The work they are doing in the community is making a positive different – it’s a million miles away from how they felt first thing that morning before they went to the project, and not how they were expecting to feel.’
The Hillingdon Initiative has been very well received by residents and councillors alike. Cllr Ray Puddifoot, Leader of the Council, praised the work saying ‘Having Hillingdon residents decide where the borough’s Community Payback mobile team is most needed is another example of how we continue to put residents first.’
One 77 year old resident who called the council after a private alley was filled with rubbish was delighted by the team’s efficient work, adding ‘they got straight down to it and did the job. I’ve lived here for more than 50 years and it’s never been so clean. I would recommend them to anyone.’