We like to bang on about how great (or rather, OK!) Perth is – but our greatness doesn’t just happen out of nowhere!
With a mission to create thriving, connected and empowered communities, Town Team Movement is all about “doers”.
We’re partnering up with Town Team Movement so we can shine a light on some of the people who help make our communities so unique, and just a few of the excellent initiatives they’re working on.
This week, we’re featuring Anna Kelderman: one of the brains behind the Leederville Connect Town Team.
Anna, could you tell us when Leederville Town Team was established?
The roots of Leederville Town Team stretch back about 15 years, even before my involvement. Early pioneers like Jimmy Murphy and local traders initiated conversations about Leadville’s dynamics. This dialogue sparked the desire for vibrant experiences, including street festivals, paving the way for what would eventually become the town team movement.
Over time, the focus broadened to encompass social infrastructure, inclusivity, and long-term planning, ensuring Leederville’s evolution into a welcoming place for everyone, with an emphasis on community well-being, safety, and sustainable development. It has a long history; it is a fun place!
You’re not a full-time member of the town team, correct?
Absolutely, none of us are. We’re all volunteers at Leederville Connect. While the City of Vincent has been a consistent supporter, offering funding and occasional grants, our efforts are entirely driven by passionate individuals who dedicate their time to make a difference.
What drives your continued involvement? How do you personally benefit from being part of a town team?
For me, it aligns with my professional passion for community engagement. I’ve noticed a common thread: communities crave a sense of belonging and safe spaces. Leederville Connect provides a platform to extend these efforts beyond conventional boundaries, focusing not just on buildings, but on fostering community spaces.
Leederville Connect seems to have a rich history. What were the initial goals, and how have they evolved over time?
Initially, our focus was on creating vibrant experiences, activations, and lively events. However, our perspective gradually expanded. We developed the Leederville narrative, delving into the physical representation of our town, our broader community. Later, our emphasis shifted to social infrastructure, emphasising inclusivity, safety, and sustainability. We’re not just a friendly place, we are actively participating in accessibility, supporting homelessness in Leederville, and trying to create a space to have conversations about societal aspects that affect communities that are part of our locality.
What can you share about Leederville Connect’s upcoming projects?
Currently, we’re deeply involved in the “User Experience 2” project. This initiative tackles various key aspects, such as movement plans, renewable energies, and innovative urban food integration. Collaboration with stakeholders, including local government and universities, drives these projects. Our collective aim is to transform Leadville’s public spaces, making them more accessible, green, and community-centric.
Leederville Connect is proactive. How do you maintain this level of productivity?
Our proactive approach stems from our long-term strategic vision. Many committee members, myself included, have professional backgrounds in planning and sustainability. This expertise allows us to envision Leederville’s future, ensuring our efforts translate into meaningful outcomes and inclusivity. We focus on projects that align with our expertise and passion, making our contributions impactful. But also, most volunteers work on projects from which they get value out of.
Reflecting on Leederville Connect’s journey, what would you consider its most significant achievement? And what are you proudest of?
One of our most significant achievements lies in the tangible impact we’ve made. Seeing other organisations incorporate our work into their projects is incredibly fulfilling. Personally, contributing to a communal cause and witnessing the positive outcomes for Leederville’s residents is immensely satisfying. It’s about building a genuine sense of community and fulfilling a shared need for connection and belonging.
For me personally, I think that there is something special about looking beyond your own benefit, and a lot of the things that we are talking about are well beyond our own benefit. One of the reasons that it is such a nice feeling to be involved is because it is like having our own little community.
Want to get involved and become a doer in your own community? Head to the Town Team Movement website to learn more.