Chair & Executive Director

Welcome to our annual report covering the April 2022 – March 2023 period. With the dreaded Covid now behind us, but recognising it is still around, we have been able to get back to more face to face meetings and engaging more and more with community groups in East Belfast.

This report highlights the work EBCDA have delivered during the April 2022 – March 2023 period which includes daily management of East Belfast Network Centre which is a base for 10 groups; chatty bench project which engaged 23 community groups; ongoing development of work with the menopause cafes and the development of wellbeing cafes; support for the various East Belfast Forums and Networks we collaboratively manage; management of Belfast City Council Hardship Fund, working with 25 community groups to deliver throughout East Belfast; ongoing development of work with mens groups; delivery of the very successful pain management programme; access NI checks for staff and volunteers of East based organisations; supporting groups in managing their finance and resources; member of Dept for Communities Review of Neighbourhood Renewal Strategy Development Planning; member of Belfast Stories Oversight Advisory Group; development and successful funding by the National Lottery Community Fund of our Community Connections Programme, which will start in May 2024; 

This is the third year of reporting on our 5-year strategy “People Build Communities”. Within each annual report we report on our activity under our three themes within the strategy, these are;

Theme 1 – Community Support & Capacity Building:

To assess the needs of the community sector and work with other key organisations to:

  • recognise the principles and values of adopting a community development approach
  • draw up support programmes that develop the community sector
  • plan projects that lead to more collaborative working
  • develop plans and strategies that build capacity
  • advocate on behalf of and with communities
  • seek to influence the policies of community, voluntary, government and statutory agencies.

Theme 2 – Community Resource & Finance Services:

To manage our human and physical resources and promote good financial management practiced the community sector by:

  • offering financial management advice and guidance

  • providing financial training and support services

  • providing a payroll and community accountancy service

  • managing and maintaining East Belfast Network Centre

  • ensuring the sector is up to date in charity compliance.

Theme 3 – Community Health Development:

To encourage, support and facilitate the provision of community health programmes and projects that:

  • seek to influence the health policies of community, voluntary, government and statutory agencies

  • promote and provide opportunities for health education and training

  • support the community sector to recognise the value of adopting a community development health approach in their work

  • builds the capacity of the communities in East Belfast to develop collective solutions to their health problems

  • plan and deliver health projects that lead to more collaborative working.


East Belfast Community Development Agency
exists to provide resources, support and
capacity building programmes for community groups
that are based on partnership,
equal opportunities and sustainable outcomes.

Theory of Change

EBCDA’s job is to add value to the activity undertaken by groups in local areas and to work with key organisations to ensure the continued development of a community sector in East Belfast that is recognised, valued and effective. We seek to support successful community development, encourage reflective practice and promote cooperation and locally based solutions.


We are grateful to our staff team and Board of Directors for their time, effort and commitment to EBCDA.  Thanks also to our funders, Department for Communities (DfC) Belfast City Council (BCC), the Public Health Agency (PHA), The Executive Office and the Community Empowerment Directorate (CED).  Thank you also to our members for their support and working closely with us to build towards achieving our strategy for 2020-2025 “People Build Communities”

Karen Purdy, Chair

Michael Briggs, Executive Director

Annual Report Sections


Chair & Executive Director

Theme 1

Community Support & Capacity Building

Theme 2

Community Resource & Finance Services

Theme 3

Community Health Development


Income & Expenditure