How Janice helped make her community a better place


A community volunteer who works tirelessly to better the lives of those around her, has been recognised with an award.

Janice Scott who grew up on The Priors Estate in Bury St Edmunds helped form the Priors Estate Action Group, initially to oppose the closure and redevelopment of the local pub in early 2014.

Since then she has done everything from organising community activities including weekly sports days, annual fireworks and Christmas parties, weekly litter picks, pantomime trips for children and pensioners, pensioners dinners, and food hampers for families in need.

She has also helped establish a network for parents to help them support each other and led a community consultation over the new play area. Janice mentors and provides a role model to people with low confidence and aspirations on the estate, and as chairman of the action group, she speaks up on behalf of the Priors on many subjects including the recent consultation on the town centre draft masterplan.

All of this has seen Janice named as the 2017 winner of Community Action Suffolk’s Ian Campbell MBE award for individual initiative – an award that recognises an unsung individual who works for the benefit of the community.

Robert Everitt, Cabinet Member for Families and Communities at St Edmundsbury Borough Council, and a ward member for the estate, said: “For the  simplest explanation of what we mean when we talk about our Families and Communities Strategy then you would need look no further than Janice Scott. Our work is about supporting families and strengthening communities to enable them to become more resilient and more able to help themselves – and quite frankly Janice does the lot. She is a remarkable woman and I am delighted that she has received this recognition.”

Clive Springett who also represents the Priors Estate on the Borough Council, said: “Janice has worked tirelessly on behalf of her local community and the Priors is an even better place as a result of all her efforts. She galvanises people, brings them together and helps lift them up. Credit to her and a huge congratulations on winning this award.”

Janice said: “I was brought up on this estate and in my opinion it is a great place to live. It is a real community where people look after each other. In fact there’s so many people on the estate working hard to achieve positive things for this community, so while it’s my name on the award, really this is for all of them. It is nice to get an award and recognition but our main purpose is to work on behalf of the estate and I will continue to do all that I can to help the people that live here, and to make this an even better place to live.”

Pete Richardson, chief executive of Community Action Suffolk said: “The Awards panel, as always, found it difficult to select winners from such a variety of inspiring community action. What excites me, is the amount of work and volunteering taking place in Suffolk, we really do have some amazing projects on our doorsteps. Often this work goes unnoticed by many but without it, vulnerable people wouldn’t be given the support they need and communities wouldn’t be the social centres that they are. Janice is a great example of dedication and commitment to her community, many congratulations to Janice and I look forward to meeting her at the CAS Awards event.”

Janice will be formally presented with the award at a ceremony at The Museum of East Anglian Life in Stowmarket on 26 September.

She is pictured on the right hand side of the photo above. Also pictured are councillors Clive Springett, Robert Everitt and Jon Eaton on behalf of Community Action Suffolk.

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