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The Belfast Community Network (BCN) and fellow members of the North West Collective  are doing great work in our communities.  I brought Minister for the Community and Voluntary Sector Hon Alfred Ngaro to meet members this month for some valuable, two-way information sharing and to visit the BCN at their Sheldon Park offices. It’s important to me to provide opportunities for all our local organisations to talk directly to our Ministers.

The Building Stronger Communities public meeting I held at the Belfast Rugby Club with Minister Ngaro  on 2 March received great feedback from our local community groups and residents.  It was exciting to see people get involved in how we can support our communities as they grow. Our regeneration is not just about the bricks and mortar but keeping our communities connected and resourced.

I enjoyed getting involved in the launch of the Good Night, Sleep Tight charitable trust in Casebrook earlier this month. Trust members are working hard to ensure children in greater Christchurch have access to warm winter bedding and pyjamas, and I encourage everyone to support this great work.

I joined our community in marking the sixth anniversary of the Canterbury earthquake at the memorial service and unveiling of the earthquake national memorial. We will always remember those who lost their lives on that terrible day.

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