THIS week's Councillor Column comes from Cllr Lorna Douglas (SNP, Helensburgh Central).

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AS chair of the Helensburgh Community Hall Ltd, it was fantastic to be able to celebrate the launch of the Helensburgh Community Hub recently, on the Hub’s first birthday.

This community initiative was made possible by the strong hearted-determination of the board and steering group, who were encouraged and supported at all times by individuals, members, the local community, and stakeholders alike.

From the day the campaign started in 2019 to save the building for people and groups in Helensburgh to use, it’s amazing to see this community space now up and running - the offices, the hall and the library are all providing a rich array of support and resources for our local community.

Our tenants, Argyll and Bute Rape Crisis, The British Red Cross Mobility Aid, Key Housing and the Helensburgh and Lomond Foodbank, are now settled and providing key support for those in our community.

Groups providing weekly activities and support such as Fun First, We are With You, AA Support Group, the Friday night youth club, art clubs and quilters’ clubs are all now firmly established within the Hub.

READ MORE: Helensburgh Community Hub 'bursting with life' after official launch event

As we move into 2022 monthly events and activities on the theme of ‘Kindness Creates Connection Creates Community’ are being organised.

Connecting with others is crucial to our health and wellbeing and building connections and strengthening our community through acts of kindness - to ourselves, each other, and our environment.

The venue’s book sale, now The Book Nook @ The Hub, providing second-hand books, will be expanding its opening hours to reach more people in our community and providing a drop in space for a browse, a chat and a cuppa in a peaceful atmosphere.

So I want to finish by saying a heartfelt thank you, to all of those who have been part of this incredible journey.

To the local people who gave their support by signing the initial petition hoping to save the hall; to our amazing community, the individuals and group members, who have given their time, skills, energy and money so generously to bring the building into community ownership; to all the organisations who have worked with us and have advised us every step of the way; to our funders, the Scottish Land Fund, Argyll and Bute Council, the Robertson Trust, ACHA, Arnold Clark and the Co-op; to our project managers, who have moved the Hub forward and brought it back into community life; and, last but not least, the members of the board, past and present, who have been incredible to work with.

Finally, I wish you all a peaceful Christmas and a New Year full of kindness.