Supporting community engagement with Charleston Summer Sessions

Area: Dundee local area
Topic: Activities/Events Parents/Families
Audience: Families

What Matters to You is celebrating the success of its ‘Charleston Summer Sessions’ programme, having successfully engaged with over 60 local family members over a six-week period this summer.

Created in partnership with the Lochee Community, Learning and Development team, the programme offered local families a chance to connect and bond over six lunchtime group sessions, enjoying the opportunity to socialise, play, learn and eat together. 

Of the over 60 families that engaged with the sessions, many have highlighted that the activities have encouraged them to engage with the community centre to access further support and service provisions and to further consider the opportunities for parent empowerment in their local community.

The programme follows the success of an earlier partnership between What Matters to You and the Lochee Community, Learning and Development team. The Big Night In’ initiative, which ran over an eight-week period in May and June 2023 aimed to counter the lack of evening provision and opportunities for families to come together in the Charleston area.

Elspeth Burns-Chater, Lochee Community, Learning and Development Team, said: “It has been great working with WM2U. Seeing parents and families, many of whom are new to visiting the Charleson Community Centre, coming together in greater numbers than we would have anticipated. We are now working on plans to take the thoughts of the parents, work to develop them and develop future support offerings that are important to them.”

Geoff Leask, What Matters to You, said: “ We have been absolutely delighted by the achievements of the Charleston Summer Sessions and Big Night In. It has been a pleasure to deliver these programmes with our colleagues at the Lochee Community, Learning and Development Team.

“Listening to the community is vital for WM2U and this partnership, which helps deliver on the local community plan, is testimony to that strong collaboration.”

What Matters to You will continue to support parents in the Lochee area as they develop community-based ideas and participate in the upcoming Values Based Leadership Experience with our partners at Columba 1400. 

To find out more about how you can get involved with What Matters to You projects in your area, please email