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Student Community Ambassadors help residents map highlights of the local area

'Nothing more important than your own home'. Visitors to the Community Festival were asked to pick their highlights of the local area.

Children were invited to draw their favourite places.

Shoreham skate park.

Student Community Ambassadors led activities at the University’s recent Community Festival to encourage residents to share their favourite local places and the memories attached to them.

The ambassadors have just spent three months visiting nearly 7,000 households in the local area as part of a University-run scheme to promote positive relationships in the community.

With the help of the ambassadors, visitors to the Community Festival placed stickers and notes on a large map to show their favourite local gems or places that were significant to them. These included restaurants where first dates happened, the starting points for childhood adventures, or places where milestone birthdays were celebrated.

One couple chose Stanmer Church as their local gem, having married there in 1960. Another person chose their own street adding the note: ‘Nothing more important than your own home.’

Children were also able to draw their own picture of a place which is important to them. Some drew pictures of their homes and families while others chose to draw their favourite place to play, such as a local park.

Sara Comuzzo was one of this year’s Student Community Ambassadors and helped with the activities at the Community Festival. Sara commented: “It was great how willing people were to share their favourite places. To hear why these locations were so important was often really moving.”

Callum Upton, another ambassador who helped to run the activities, said: “I loved hearing everyone's stories and the map was a great way to show the range of people we spoke to on the day.”

By the end of the day the map was filled with marks, notes and drawings. These showed locations right across city of Brighton and Hove as well as further afield.

Naomi Barnard, a Housing Officer in the University’s Housing team and who helped to organise the activities, commented: “It was fantastic to use these activities as a way to celebrate where people live but also as a way for our Student Ambassadors to have another opportunity to chat with local residents.

“We’ve had really positive feedback about our stall at the festival as well as our Student Community Ambassadors scheme, and we will continue to organise activities like these in the future.”

For more information on the University’s work in the local community, please visit the Sussex in the Community webpages.

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Posted on behalf of: Sussex in the Community
Last updated: Thursday, 12 July 2018