A community project launched by Kirklees Council has reached the finals of a global competition.
The project to pool community resources across the area is one of 21 European finalists in the 2013-2014 Mayors Challenge run by Bloomberg Philanthropies.
The Mayors Challenge is a competition to inspire cities and towns to generate innovative ideas that solve major challenges and improve life, and that ultimately can spread to other cities.
One prize winner will receive €5 million for the most creative and transferable idea and four others will be awarded €1 million.
The winners will be announced in the Autumn.
Kirklees proposes a platform to help the region make the most of what it has and to do more with less, pooling civic and community’s idle assets, from vehicles to unused spaces to citizens’ untapped time and expertise.
Kirklees is one of five UK areas competing in the finals; the others are Bristol, Cardiff, London, and York.
The finalists’ proposed solutions address some of Europe’s most critical issue areas: youth unemployment, aging populations, civic engagement, economic development, environment and energy concerns, public health and safety, and making government more efficient.
The Leader of Kirklees Council Clr David Sheard said: “It is fantastic to be shortlisted in such a huge competition, but our plans have at their heart using the assets we have in the best way possible.
“The best ideas are the simple ones, and we hope that by pooling assets and ideas we can make a massive difference to Kirklees through using what is currently untapped resource.”
New York Mayor Michael R Bloomberg said: “European cities in this year’s Mayors Challenge stepped up with bold and creative ideas that have the potential to improve lives across the continent and globe.
“We need city leaders to continually reach for innovative new ways to address urban challenges – and then share what’s working with the world. That’s what the Mayors Challenge is all about.”
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